A press statement from the band says: "We are very saddened to announce that our dear friend Jeremy Michael Ward passed away from an apparent drug overdose at his home in Los Angeles on May 25, 2003. He was 27 years old."
Ward served as sound manipulator for The Mars Volta, working on every one of their recordings and live shows.
"We have collaborated with Jeremy for the past 10 years. He was the driving force of Defacto, and an integral part of The Mars Volta, who often went unnoticed because he chose to perform offstage. In addition to music, Jeremy was an incredibly talented writer and painter."
"We are devastated by the loss, but know that Jeremy will continue to bewith us in spirit at every show and during the making of every record."
He and the rest of The Mars Volta had only just returned to LA for a week of rest between legs of their support tour with Red Hot Chili Peppers. They were touring in support of their eagerly-anticipated upcoming Strummer/Universal debut, 'De-Loused In The Comatorium', due out on June 24th.
Rest in peace.