Kiss are being sued for negligence and wrongful death by the family of Paul Stanley's guitar tech, who died from Covid during their End Of The Road tour

Kiss' Paul Stanley
(Image credit: Daniel Pockett/AFL Photos/via Getty Images)

The widow and family of Paul Stanley's longtime guitar tech Francis 'Fran' Stueber are suing Kiss, their manager Doc McGhee and promoters Live Nation for wrongful death and negligence in connection with Stueber's death in 2021 during the band's on-going End Of The Road tour.

Stueber, who worked with Stanley for 20 years, died alone quarantining in his room at the Four Points Hotel By Sheraton in Detroit on October 17, 2021, two days after testing positive for Covid. He was 53. The Wayne County Health Examiner’s office, confirmed that the father of three died of the virus.

Following the guitar tech's death, Paul Stanley posted a tribute to Stueber on his website and social media accounts, writing, "My dear friend, buddy and guitar tech for 20 years, Fran Stueber died yesterday suddenly of Covid. Both on and offstage I depended on him for so much. My family loved him as did I. He was so proud of his wife and 3 boys as they were of him. I’m numb."

Catherine Stueber and members of her family filed their suit in Los Angeles on Wednesday, October 11, claiming negligence and wrongful death.

“As a direct and proximate result of the dangerous condition created by Defendants,” the suit says, “Decedent suffered fatal injuries and Plaintiffs suffered damages, including, but not limited to funeral and burial expenses, the permanent deprivation of the love, companionship, affection, solace, society, comfort, assistance, services and financial contributions, and moral support of Decedent in an amount according to proof at trial.”

Stueber’s family claims that “the failure to enforce or have adequate Covid-19 policies or procedures caused a Covid-19 outbreak amongst band members and tour personnel.” 

Gene Simmons addressed Stueber's death last year in an interview with Spin magazine.

Simmons said, "We had a wonderful member of the family, Fran [Stueber], who was our guitar tech – who may or may not have filled out the right forms and had the right paperwork because everybody [on the Kiss crew] had to be vaccinated multiple times and proof that you did it. He got a little sick. He was asked to stay at a hotel. We stopped doing concerts and he refused to go a few blocks over to the hospital. And within four days he passed away, alone in the hotel room. We went to the memorial and it breaks your heart because you have three kids and a wonderful wife and everybody’s crying their hearts out. And I wanted to jump up and scream: “Why? It’s preventable!”

Paul Brannigan
Contributing Editor, Louder

A music writer since 1993, formerly Editor of Kerrang! and Planet Rock magazine (RIP), Paul Brannigan is a Contributing Editor to Louder. Having previously written books on Lemmy, Dave Grohl (the Sunday Times best-seller This Is A Call) and Metallica (Birth School Metallica Death, co-authored with Ian Winwood), his Eddie Van Halen biography (Eruption in the UK, Unchained in the US) emerged in 2021. He has written for Rolling Stone, Mojo and Q, hung out with Fugazi at Dischord House, flown on Ozzy Osbourne's private jet, played Angus Young's Gibson SG, and interviewed everyone from Aerosmith and Beastie Boys to Young Gods and ZZ Top. Born in the North of Ireland, Brannigan lives in North London and supports The Arsenal.