ST. LOUIS(KSDK)- Bob Reuter, a longtime musician in our area, died Saturday in a bizarre accident, falling down an elevator shaft.
Reuter was born and raised in St. Louis.
He had his share of challenges including heart failure and at times, as a struggling artist, he could barely afford to eat. He overcame all of that then died in a tragic accident.
Now, his legacy lives on through all of his work.
The 61-year-old was a true artist. He was a photographer, writer, and above all a talented musician. He played the guitar and was the lead singer of Bob Reuter's Alley Ghost.
"I was his drummer, he was my best friend, we traveled the country together, played Rock and Roll," said Rueter's band mate who goes by "Bass Amp."
He was with Reuter when the accident happened. He and another band mate were helping him move into a building on St. Charles Street in Downtown St. Louis Saturday afternoon when firefighters say he walked into the freight elevator thinking it was there and fell 18 feet. Investigators say he died on impact.
"I lost it. I didn't know what to do. I couldn't believe it," said Bass Amp.
Now, the many he has touched throughout the St. Louis community are remembering him.
"Bob's influence was very major here in St. Louis," said Tom Ray, who owns Vintage Vinyl in the Delmar Loop and was friends with Reuter for more than two decades.
"He totally went out at the top of his game, artistically he was hitting on all cylinders, he was touring outside of town, he's also the host of a long running and extremely popular show on 88.1 KDHX," said Ray.
"Bob Reuter was a friend, an artist, and a mentor who dedicated his life to his art and portrayed the realism of life as something beautiful. He was somebody who strove through hard times and turned it into beautiful creative pieces of work," said Chris Baricevic, the owner of "Big Muddy Records."
Bob Reuter's Alley Ghost's latest album was released on the label.
"He's had a lot of rough times in his life. In the past two years it seemed like he had finally come into his own and was really happy. I think it was the happiest time of his life and it's really sad that it didn't last nearly long enough," said Erin Wiles, who edited some of Reuter's books, inlcuding his memoirs.
Reuter's funeral arrangements and a public memorial in his honor are still being finalized.
Investigators plan to pick up their investigation on Monday to determine if the building on St. Charles Street is up to code.