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Tony Iommi: 'I couldn't contact Bill Ward after surgery'

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Dec 17, 2013 | 7:21am EST

Black Sabbath star Tony Iommi was unable to contact his former bandmate Bill Ward following his recent surgery because he no longer has the drummer's phone number. Ward underwent an operation to repair a perforation in the wall of his intestine at a hospital in California in October (13), and Iommi wanted to reach out to him after hearing the news. However, the guitarist was unable to get hold of Ward, and had to send an email to the rocker's secretary instead. He tells Classic Rock, "I haven't spoken to Bill, but to be honest, I don't actually know how to reach Bill these days because he doesn't have the same phone number as I have for him. I see people saying: 'Why don't they talk?' But it's not that simple. The only way I can reach Bill is by emailing his secretary, and then she speaks to Bill. It's not as easy as picking the phone up. "I emailed him the other week, because he'd been in hospital and wasn't that well, but that's as far as it's got at the moment. I'd like to talk to Bill - me and Bill have been friends for many years - but it's not happened recently." Ward, 65, was one of the founding members of the heavy metal group, but he has been left out of the current incarnation of the band.

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