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walter froebrich toronto

Man who has been a fixture at Toronto concerts dies after not receiving care at local hospital

Toronto's metal community is mourning the loss of beloved music fan Walter Froebrich, claiming his death was preventable and accusing a local hospital of negligence. 

Froebrich allegedly visited St. Joseph's Health Centre three times in 10 days prior to his death, complaining of severe abdominal pain. 

Longtime friend of Froebrich, John Romanelli, told Global News that Froebrich had lost considerable weight and complained about serious pain in his abdomen in the weeks prior to his death. 

45-year-old Froebrich went to the emergency room, and according to his friends, hospital staff sent him home with antibiotics. When the pain didn't subside, Froebrich was back at the hospital for a second time and was given antibiotics once again. 

After going to the same hospital for the third and final time, Froebrich was found dead inside his apartment by his friends. 

"We're devasted, he fell through the cracks," Romanelli told Global News. "He couldn't advocate for himself, and the poor guy was sent home to die." 

Froebrich's friends claim he was a man of few words, and instead of fighting with hospital staff, he went home. 

"He was in unbelievable, unbearable pain and they just sent him home," Romanelli told Global News. "I think that's one of the reasons he fell through the cracks, because he couldn't advocate for himself." 

On Dec. 3, a rally formed outside St. Joseph's hospital, with friends of Froebrich and members of the metal community holding signs that read "Justice for Walter." 

"In Toronto, Walter was the mayor of metal. There's nobody as well known as Walter [in the community]," friend Chris Larocque told Global News

"He was just a huge fan of music and everythig to do with it and everybody that liked it. The metal community is a community where we all love each other and take care of each other," high-school friend Phillip Villeneff said to Global news. "It's a devastating blow." 

A GoFundMe page has been started to fund Froebrich's funeral and memorial expenses, having gathered over $11,000 at the time of writing. 

Froebrich's friends have also organized a benefit show in his honour at the Rockpile on Jan. 6. 

Lead photo by

Walter Froebrich


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