By Jordan Runtagh
February 08, 2019 at 07:19 PM EST
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Ex Fleetwood Mac guitarist Lindsey Buckingham has revealed that he underwent emergency open heart surgery last week. According to a statement his wife Kristen shared on Facebook, the 69-year-old rock legend is now recuperating at home. “Each day he is stronger than the last,” she writes.

Elsewhere in the note, she says that Buckingham suffered some vocal cord damage in the midst of the health crisis. “While it is unclear if this damage is permanent, we are hopeful it is not,” she continues.

The message also alludes to Buckingham’s difficult year, during which he was fired from his longtime band after lead singer — and former romantic partner — Stevie Nicks reportedly issued what the guitarist has previously described as a “he goes or I go” ultimatum to the rest of the group. Buckingham filed a civil suit, which he said was settled out of court late last year for undisclosed terms.

“This past year has been a very stressful and difficult year for our family to say the least,” Kristen Buckingham continues in the statement. “But despite all this, our gratitude for life trumps all obstacles we have faced at this moment. We feel so fortunate he’s alive. As does he. He looks forward to recovery and putting this behind him. Needless to say, all touring and shows currently scheduled have been put on pause for the moment as he gathers the strength to heal completely.”

Buckingham had recently been on the road to promote his new triple-disc Solo Anthology: The Best of Lindsey BuckinghamHis role in the touring version of Fleetwood Mac is currently being filled by Neil Finn of Crowded House and Mike Campbell of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers.

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