Andrew Youssef, a concert photographer and writer who chronicled his battle with cancer for OC Weekly, died Saturday, the California alt-weekly reported. He was 38. Youssef was a devout Nine Inch Nails fan who drew attention last month when Trent Reznor called him onstage from a concert in Las Vegas that Youssef had been too ill to attend.
“He was surrounded by his family and loved ones and went peacefully,” Youssef’s brother Pat said in a statement to the Facebook fundraising page NIN Fans for Andrew Youssef. “I can honestly tell you, that your efforts and love have made a big difference for the family and Andrew.”
After Youssef was diagnosed with colon cancer early in 2011 and he chronicled his battle with the disease in the column “Last Shot.” His last entry came October 10th, when he wrote about attending rehearsals for the Nine Inch Nails’ current tour. “One of my many favorite moments was being able to eat with Trent and talk about everything from Breaking Bad to my journey fighting colon cancer and how I refuse to give up without putting up a fight,” Youssef wrote. “Those moments are something I will always cherish.”
Youssef, who worked as a hospital pharmacist by day, was a lifelong music fan. He saw his first concert when he was nine – Judas Priest at Long Beach Arena in 1984. Youssef spent seven years as a freelance concert photographer, and had shot more than 330 shows since his diagnosis, OC Weekly wrote in an October cover story. “If I have the energy to do something, I’m gonna do it. Because there’s gonna come a time when I won’t have it,” he told the newspaper.
A Los Angeles-area native, Youssef studied pharmacy at the University of the Pacific in California. He’s survived by his parents and his older brother. Funeral arrangements and memorial service details haven’t been announced yet.