This week, more facts were revealed after the untimely and tragic death of Twisted Sister drummer A.J. Pero at the age of 55. His longtime girlfriend Michele Agnello put out a plea for help on a crowdfunding site, saying in essence that Pero died without a will and without providing support for her or their 14-year-old daughter.
In a brutally frank and honest statement, Twisted Sister singer Dee Snider had this to say exclusively to The House of Hair:
“This is the unfortunate reality of irresponsible adult behavior. Not only did A.J. Pero have a family history of heart disease, which he allowed to go unchecked, but he did not have a will, left behind two ex-wives, a longtime girlfriend, four children between the three of them, and a mess of an estate to be sorted out. Now, there is infighting, mistrust and dissension amongst the family members about how to handle life after AJ. What a mess. While the legalities of the situation are being sorted out, Twisted Sister is doing a show to raise some money to help the family out in the short-term. This unfortunate situation should be a life lesson to all to take responsibility for the world we create and will leave behind when we are gone.”
The show Dee is referring to will take place at the Starland Ballroom in New Jersey on Saturday, June 13, 2015. It is billed as “A Concert To Honor AJ Pero”.
In addition, Dee Snider has confirmed that AJ’s replacement will be drummer Mike Portnoy. Portnoy is best known for his years in Dream Theater. In a strange twist, Pero replaced Portnoy in Adrenaline Mob, the band Pero was touring with at the time of his death. Portnoy has also recently been a member of the critcally acclaimed Winery Dogs, with Billy Sheehan and Richie Kotzen. Watch for the official press release later this week.
Agnello’s GoFundMe campaign, which went live last week, was no longer available as of this morning. It is unknown why her campaign was removed from the site. The campaign had asked for $15,000 in funding, with the following plea:
Hi my name is Michele Agnello. I was AJ Pero’s long time girlfriend of 19 years, his companion, best friend and the mother of his youngest daughter Brianna, age 14. Brianna was his sunshine. When he was not traveling and working as a world renowned rock star in Twisted Sister and Adrenaline Mob, he was just her dad. When he was home they did everything together. She was his shadow, he was her whole world. He was and always will be the love of our lives.
As most of you know AJ recently passed away from a massive heart attack while on tour. Due to his unexpected and untimely passing we now need a little help getting on our feet, to keep our home, basically start over without him. AJ truly loved and appreciated his worldwide fans so now we are reaching out to you all. For almost 20 years AJ has been the sole provider for our family as the drummer in the legendary rock band Twisted Sister and had recently joined the band Adrenaline Mob. This is very hard for me to ask for help but at the moment we have nowhere else to turn. Since we weren’t legally married and he had no will, we are left with nothing and the bills are starting to pour in already this month.
I have been unemployed for several years now due to an accident that left me disabled with 2 broken elbows and subsequently rods had to be implanted. I am asking for your assistance in helping us so I can get my daughter through this incredibly heartbreaking and difficult time in our lives. With my head held low and my heart completely shattered I ask for your help so we can keep our home, I can feed my daughter and buy her clothes until I find a job to support us. Anything you can spare would be greatly apprciated. Thank you and God bless you all!
The House of Hair will keep you updated on this story.