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AC/DC Guitarist Malcolm Young Has Dementia, Family Confirms

ByJordianne Cornejo
Sep 30, 2014 10:47 PM EDT

The family of AC/DC guitarist Malcolm Young has confirmed that the musician has dementia, as has been rumored in the past week, according to a Billboard report.

"Malcolm is suffering from dementia and the family thanks you for respecting their privacy," Young's family said in a statement to PEOPLE.

In April, AC/DC announced that Young would be taking a break from the band due to an unspecified illness. Rumors of the band breaking up then circulated, but the group confirmed they would go on and expressed hope that the founding guitarist would return.

Last Wednesday, AC/DC -- which was formed by Young and his younger brother Angus in 1973 - issued a new statement revealing that Malcolm would not be returning to the band even as a new album has been recorded and will be released in December. The band cited Young's deteriorating condition but did not go into detail about his affliction.

On Friday, Sydney Morning Herald floated the rumor that Young had been admitted to a nursing home facility in Sydney for full-time care, according to sources close to the musician's family. The place, understood to be Lulworth House in Elizabeth Bay, was said to be known for specializing in dementia.

The sources, according to the paper, said: "If you were in the room with [Malcom Young] and walked out, then came back in one minute later, he wouldn't remember who you are. He has a complete loss of short-term memory. His wife, Linda, has put him in full-time care."

In addition to dementia, what also contributed to Young's untimely retirement was a stroke believed to have happened sometime last year, according to Blabbermouth.

Due to his health, Young has not been able to contribute to AC/DC's new album "Rock or Bust," which the band has already recorded and will release in December. Young's nephew, guitarist Stevie Young, filled in for him in the studio and will tour with the band to support the album.

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