Bishop Eddie Long has lost his battle with cancer, a New Birth Baptist Church spokesperson confirmed in a statement on Sunday. He was 63.
The church released a statement on Sunday, saying Mr. Long waged a "gallant private fight with an aggressive form of cancer.".
The controversial preacher was the subject of many rampant rumors in his final months. He reportedly suffered from an aggressive form of duodenal adenocarcinoma (cancer of the small intestine), according to a church insider.
Duodenal adenocarcinoma is rare and deadly because it is often caught too late and spreads rapidly. The prognosis for this form of cancer is poor.
Since the tumor is located at the beginning of the small intestine, it sometimes blocks food from entering the intestine from the stomach.
Long is survived by his wife, Vanessa Long, his four children and three grandchildren.
Vanessa Long released a statement on Sunday, saying "I am confidant through my belief in God that my husband is now resting in a better place. Although, his transition leaves a void for those of us who loved him dearly, we can celebrate and be happy for him, knowing he’s at peace."