Entertainment

Swiss rocker killed in crash on Nev. interstate

The Associated Press

October 06, 2010

Singer Stefan Lee of Swiss rock band Gotthard, seen performing in 2006, has been killed in a highway accident in Nevada. ((Dominique Favre/ARC/Reuters))

The frontman for Swiss rock band Gotthard was killed when a tractor-trailer skidded into his parked motorcycle on a rainy Nevada highway northeast of Las Vegas, authorities in the U.S. said Wednesday.

Stefan Alois Lee, 47, and a group of at least eight other motorcyclists had pulled to the side of Interstate 15 to put on rain clothing at about 5:15 p.m. PT Tuesday, the Nevada Highway Patrol said.

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The semitrailer, driven by Edwin Zuk, 27, of Illinois, swerved and the trailer slammed into a parked Harley-Davidson motorcycle that hit Lee. 

"It was just a freak accident," Trooper Joseph Fackrell told The Associated Press.

Lee was pronounced dead at the scene, about 100 kilometres north of Las Vegas and 16 kilometres south of the Nevada-Arizona border town of Mesquite, Fackrell said.

Lee was the frontman for Gotthard, one of Switzerland's most successful bands, selling millions of albums. It has played alongside bands such as Deep Purple, Whitesnake and Bon Jovi.

Lee was among 21 tourists including Gotthard bassist Marc Lynn and Lee's girlfriend, Brigitte Voss-Balzarini, who arrived in the United States on the weekend, said Jan Bayati of German music management company Bottom Row. No one else was injured in the crash.

"Lee wasn't just one of the best voices in rock, he also had an extraordinary personality," Bayati said.

The Clark County coroner listed Lee's hometown as Porza, Switzerland.

Fackrell said the investigation was continuing, but drugs, alcohol and speed did not appear to be factors in the crash. 

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