Oct 13, 2023 2 min read

Family of late Kiss guitar tech sue band over their COVID protocols during 2021 tour

The family of late guitar tech Francis Stueber have sued Kiss. He died of COVID while touring with the band in 2021 and the family say that was because there were inadequate safety measures in place as Kiss toured during the pandemic

Family of late Kiss guitar tech sue band over their COVID protocols during 2021 tour

The family of a Kiss guitar tech who died in 2021 after contracting COVID on their End Of The Road World Tour has sued the band, claiming that they didn't have sufficient protections in place while touring during the pandemic.

The band resumed touring in the US in August 2021 as COVID restrictions started to lift. Kiss and their management insist that they had safety protocols in place to restrict the spread of the virus on the tour which met or exceeded official guidelines.

However, a few weeks after the death of Francis Stueber - a guitar tech who had worked with Kiss for more than 20 years - three other people working on the tour told Rolling Stone that they felt the safety measures were insufficient.

One roadie said at the time: “I couldn’t believe how unsafe it was and that we were still going. We’d been frustrated for weeks and by the time Fran died, I just thought, ‘You have to be fucking kidding me’”.

Several of the specific allegations made in the Rolling Stone article are mentioned in the new lawsuit filed by Stueber's family against Kiss members Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley, as well as their longtime manager Doc McGhee and tour promoter Live Nation.

According to Rolling Stone, the lawsuit alleges that “the failure to enforce or have adequate COVID-19 policies or procedures caused a COVID-19 outbreak amongst band members and tour personnel”. After Stueber tested positive for COVID, it claims, he was “abandoned in Detroit” at the Four Points Hotel By Sheraton to quarantine.

The lawsuit also alleges that, when Stueber contacted McGhee to tell him his condition was worsening, the manager said he would send medical personnel to see him. But instead he sent another crew member. When that crew member couldn't make contact with Stueber he called the police who entered his hotel room and found him unresponsive.

“As a direct and proximate result of the dangerous condition created by defendants", the lawsuit concludes, “decedent suffered fatal injuries and plaintiffs suffered damages, including, but not limited to funeral and burial expenses, the permanent deprivation of the love, companionship, affection, solace, society, comfort, assistance, services and financial contributions, and moral support of decedent in an amount according to proof at trial".

Kiss Guitar Tech’s Widow Sues Band for Wrongful Death
The lawsuit comes about two years after roadies told Rolling Stone the band allegedly had lax Covid safety protocols on tour
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