Kansas violinist and co-lead vocalist Robby Steinhardt has died at the age of 71. The rock band’s founding member was diagnosed with pancreatitis back in May and placed on life support due to acute septic shock, according to a Facebook post from his wife, Cindy Steinhardt. He eventually recovered and appeared to be on the mend, but on the day he was scheduled to be released from the Tampa hospital, the sepsis returned. “He died in my arms at 6:30pm Saturday July 17, 2021,” Cindy wrote.
Steinhardt, a classically trained violinist, joined the Topeka-based band formerly known as White Clover in 1972. The following year they changed their name to Kansas, releasing their debut album and becoming a ’70s rock staple. Steinhardt was set to go on tour with his first solo album this August. The band shared the news of his passing in a heartfelt Facebook post, writing, “Robby will always be in our souls, in our minds, and in our music.”