Clive Burr (far left) with Iron Maiden mascot Eddie and bandmates (l to r) Steve Harris, Paul Di'Anno, Dave Murray and Adrian Smith
Former Iron Maiden drummer Clive Burr has died at the age of 56 after suffering from multiple sclerosis.
Steve Harris, the heavy metal band's founder and bass player, said it was "terribly sad news" in an announcement on the group's website.
"He was a wonderful person and an amazing drummer who made a valuable contribution to Maiden in the early days when we were starting out."
Burr joined Iron Maiden in 1979 and played on their first three albums.
Lead singer Bruce Dickinson also paid tribute, saying: "Even during the darkest days of his MS, Clive never lost his sense of humour or irreverence."
Burr played on the band's debut album Iron Maiden (1980), Killers (1981) and their number one 1982 album The Number of the Beast.
Megadeth bassist David Ellefson, who left his tribute on Facebook, said: "He was one of my all time favourite Metal drummers."
"So sad," said Brian Slagal, CEO of Metal Blade Records, on Twitter. "Clive was a great guy."
"Always remember CLIVE for eternity," said Iron Maiden tribute band Coverslave in their own Twitter tribute.
Born in 1957 in east London, Burr was a member of British metal band Samson before joining Iron Maiden.
"I first met Clive when he was leaving Samson and joining Iron Maiden," said Dickinson. "He was a great guy and a man who really lived his life to the full."
Burr left the band in December 1982, just as they were about to become a global stadium headliner.
When he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2001, his former Maiden bandmates formed the Clive Burr MS Trust Fund to help raise money for his living costs.
They performed a number of concerts in his honour when he struggled to keep up payments on his house.
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