US rocker Tom Petty dies of cardiac arrest at 66

US rocker Tom Petty was reported on Monday to be clinging to life in a southern California hospital after conflicting reports that he had died.

:: Tom Petty, an old-fashioned rock superstar and everyman who drew upon the Byrds, the Beatles and other bands he worshipped as a boy and produced new classics such as “Free Fallin,’ “Refugee” and “American Girl,” has died. He was 66.

Petty died Monday night at UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles a day after he suffered cardiac arrest at his home in Malibu, California, spokeswoman Carla Sacks said.

CBS News, citing Los Angeles Police Department, had earlier reported that Petty, 66, had died. The LAPD later said on Twitter that it has “no information about the passing of singer Tom Petty. Initial information was inadvertently provided to some media sources.”

Celebrity website, citing unidentified sources, reported later that Petty was not expected to live much longer but was “still clinging to life.”

Representatives for the singer did not return calls for comment or confirmation on Petty’s condition. said earlier that Petty was rushed to hospital on Sunday night after being found unconscious, not breathing and in cardiac arrest. The website said he had been placed on life support, and that his family has a do not resuscitate order.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said it had responded to a call in Malibu on Sunday and had transported a male to the hospital. A spokeswoman gave no further details.

Rock singer Petty, best known for hits like “Free Fallin,’“ “Don’t Come Around Here No More” and “American Girl,” was on a 40th anniversary tour of the United States with his band The Heartbreakers, playing three dates in September at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles.

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