Bono Pays Tribute to Dad at U2 Concert

ByABC News

Aug. 22, 2001 -- A grieving Bono took the stage in London last night, paying tribute to his father hours after Bob Hewson lost his battle with cancer.

Hewson, a 75-year-old retired postal worker had been ill for some time. Bono decided to finish up his group's sold out U.K. tour Tuesday night despite his loss.

The flamboyant singer has been dedicating the song "Kite" to his dad during performances in the past week. He continued last night at London's Earl Court, telling the 18,000 fans he owes his success to his dad.

"We all want to thank my old man for giving me this voice," said Bono according to the music Web site, "He was a fine tenor and said to me if only I had this voice, just think what could happen.

"He was very ill over the last few weeks but he's no longer with us. He's left the planet, just like Elvis."

With U2 touring in Europe, Bono had been returning home to Dublin every night to visit his ailing dad.

‘This Is for You Bob’

Bono first spoke publicly about the severity of his father's illness last week during a concert in Britain.

"He only has a few days left in this world. This is for Bob, you old tough-o," said Bono before playing "Kite" which he has said he wrote for his own kids.

The song, which appears on the current release All That You Can't Leave Behind, reflects upon death.

I'm not afraid to die, I'm not afraid to live, And when I'm flat on my back, I hope to feel like I did

Bono's loss comes as U2 is again at the top of the rock scene.

The group earned three Grammys for a song from their current release and continues to score hits from the album.

U2 is also selling out concerts around the world and is on track to become one of the most profitable tours in history.

The group returns to Ireland this weekend to play in front of a home crowd for the first time since 1987. They will perform two sold-out concerts at Slane Castle in Dublin which holds 80,000 people.