Megadeth founder and frontman, Dave Mustaine announced that he has disbanded the group due to a severe injury to his left arm and hand he suffered last January.
This marks the end of a 19 year career for Megadeth, which Mustaine formed with bassist Dave Ellefson, guitarist Kerry King (Slayer), and drummer Lee Rauch in 1983, after he was fired from Metallica.
On the rumor front, there is so speculation that the real reason for the breakup of Megadeth is that founding member Dave Ellefson has been recruited to replace Jason Newsted in Metallica, but we were unable to confirm those reports at press time.
Back to the official reason for the breakup, Mustaine issued the following statement today (April 3, 2002)
During the first week of January 2002, while MEGADETH was on hiatus, in Texas, I suffered an injury that caused severe nerve damage to my left arm and hand. It was diagnosed as Radial Neuropathy - specifically, a "compressed radial nerve." My doctors tell me it will take about a year to make as complete a recovery as I can, and even then, we don't know how complete that is going to be. I am working hard with a great team of doctors and physical therapists daily, and God willing, someday I hope to play guitar again.
In the meantime, while I work on rebuilding my arm, I will take this opportunity to reappraise my career and my future. For the time being I have decided to exit MEGADETH, and explore other areas of the music business where I might make a contribution without being able to play my instrument.
I have had a terrific time singing and playing for you while I was in MEGADETH. I am truly grateful for all of the numerous Gold, Platinum, and Multi-Platinum Records I have been awarded, as well as the many International Record Awards. And I can never thank you, our fans past and present, enough for your loyalty and affection over the years.
My immediate goals now are to do what I can to make something good come out of this terrible situation. First and foremost, I want to use this opportunity to devote more time, energy and attention to my wife Pam and my two children, Justis and Electra. Pam has done a wonderful job carrying the load while I was a long-distance husband and father in the studio or criss-crossing the world on tour, but in terms of being a Gold or Platinum parent, I have a long way to go, and I'm eager to get started.
In closing I would like to depart with the beautiful French words I wrote on the record Youthanasia: "A tout le monde, a tous mes amis, Je vous aime, Je dois partir." (To all the world, to all my friends. I love you, I have to leave)
April 3rd, 2002