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Johnny Hallyday: French rock star dies at 74

From BBC - December 5, 2017

France's biggest rock star Johnny Hallyday has died from lung cancer, his wife says. He was 74.

The singer - real name Jean-Philippe Smet - sold about 100 million records and starred in a number of films.

He was made a Chevalier of the Legion D'Honneur by President Jacques Chirac in 1997.

The French have simply called him "Our Johnny". However, outside the Francophone zone, Hallyday was almost unknown.

In a statement, his wife Laeticia said: "Johnny Hallyday has left us," the AFP news agency reports.

"I write these words without believing them. But yet, it's true. My man is no longer with us.

"He left us tonight as he lived his whole life, with courage and dignity," she said.

Reacting to the news, French president Emmanuel Macron referenced the title of a recent tribute album by saying: "There is a little bit of Johnny in all of us".

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