Sad news to kick start off the day. It has been revealed that Riot guitarist Mark Reale has been hospitalized in San Antonio due to compilations of Crohn’s disease. Reale, who has actually been battling Crohn’s for most of his life, is said to be in critical condition. While Riot have confirmed that they will still move forward with their previously announced commitments (including the 70,000 Tons Of Metal Cruise), there’s still a strong chance that Reale may not be well enough to appear.

In the same statement, Riot also said that Reale had been struggling with these symptoms during the making of their recent album Immortal Soul. This actually would explain why Mike Flyntz recorded 90% of the guitars on the album, which singer Tony Moore revealed during our recent interview with him. Sadly, Reale isn’t the only member of Riot to have battled with health problems. Original singer Guy Speranza passed away from pancreatic cancer in 2003, while former singer Mike Tirelli was also diagnosed with stomach cancer in 2004, though is supposedly recovering well. And that’s not to mention singer Rhett Forrester, who was shot and killed in Atlanta back in 1994 after refusing to give up his car in an attempted carjacking.

Still, it’s very unfortunate to hear that Reale’s condition is critical, especially during a time when Riot have been receiving rave reviews for Immortal Soul. Here’s hoping that Reale makes a speedy recovery.