Gwar frontman Dave Brockie and his alter ego Oderus Urungus were sent off in a blaze of glory as his fans and bandmates paid their respects with a Viking Funeral on Friday.
The ceremony took place just before the annual Gwar-B-Q at Hadad’s Lake in Richmond, Virginia, Loudwire reports. In accordance with ancient Norse custom, Oderus Urungus, in the form of Brockie’s stage costume, was laid out on a boat filled with offerings, launched into the water and set on fire with a flaming arrow.
Lamb of God singer Randy Blythe eulogized Brockie during the funeral, telling the assembled family and friends, “Dave is the only motherfucker I know who has to get put away twice. He’s too big for one fucking funeral.” Blythe later posted a photo of the flaming pyre to Instagram, along with an account of the proceedings.
“Tonight we sent Oderus home in a fitting manner at the public memorial for Dave Brockie,” he wrote. “A blazing Viking ship with Oderus laid out in it, the cuttlefish pointing proudly straight up. Watching my friend Dave’s costume go up in flames in front of a thousand fans was so much more intense for me than the private memorial for friends & family we had April Fool’s Day. I spoke at both of them, as GWAR asked me to, & both times as I spoke I was sad.
“But watching his alter-ego burn tore me up way more than the first memorial, maybe because there was Dave, the human who was my friend who just ‘left us’- I never saw his body- & then there was Oderus, who was something entirely else. To watch his stage gear burn was like watching part of my life literally go up in flames. I was sobbing my eyes out as I took this photo. It was just a super-intense moment. Very beautiful, but overwhelming. Fly free, Oderus- you are missed.”
Brockie, the founder and last original member of the theatrical metal band, died of an accidental heroin overdose on March 24th at the age of 50. The following month, the surviving members of Gwar launched the Dave Brockie Foundation to preserve Brockie’s creative output and support other artists.