Tony Bennett's Wife Susan Benedetto Speaks Out After Legendary Singer's Death

Bennett died Friday, just two weeks shy of what would have been his 97th birthday.

Tony Bennett's wife Susan Benedetto paid tribute to the late singer after he died Friday in New York. He was 96.

Susan took to Bennett's verified Instagram account and posted a moving message to the fans, friends and colleagues "who celebrated his life and humanity and shared their love of him and his musical legacy."

She added, "And as sad as today has been for all of us we can find joy in Tony's legacy forever." The sweet message was signed by Susan and the couple's son, Danny. Susan posted a photo of Bennett performing at Radio City Music Hall on his 95th birthday last year. 

The Instagram account also on Saturday posted a photo of flowers left at Bennett's bench at Central Park. The bench is dedicated to the late singer. She captioned the post, "A few Central Park carriage drivers left this note on the Tony Bennett Bench which you can find at the entrance of the park - one of Tony’s favorite spots to spend an afternoon. 💐."

The music icon and 19-time GRAMMY winner died in his hometown of New York on Friday, just two weeks shy of his birthday. While there was no specific cause of death named, Bennett had previously been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. 

According to the statement, Bennett often said in later life that he hoped to be remembered "as a nice person." 

In a post shared on Bennett's official Instagram account, a heartwarming detail about his final days at home was revealed. 

"Tony left us today but he was still singing the other day at his piano and his last song was, 'Because of You,' his first #1 hit," the caption reads, alongside a beautiful black and white image of the singer in his younger years. "Tony, because of you we have your songs in our heart forever. ❤."

In February 2021, Bennett's family revealed to fans that the legendary musician had been battling Alzheimer's disease and was first diagnosed in 2016. According to the Mayo Clinic, Alzheimer's disease is defined as "a progressive neurologic disorder that causes the brain to shrink (atrophy) and brain cells to die, and is the most common cause of dementia — a continuous decline in thinking, behavioral and social skills that affects a person's ability to function independently."

Among those who paid tribute to Bennett in Hollywood included legendary filmmaker Martin Scorsese. In a statement to ET, Scorsese said, "Tony Bennett was a consummate artist. All you have to do is listen to any one of his hundreds of recordings to recognize that. Very early on, his music quietly wove itself into the fabric of our lives. His voice felt as familiar and as close as the voices of our loved ones. I know that this was true for millions of people around the world."

"For Italian-Americans who were growing up in the middle of the twentieth century, that familiarity ran even deeper," Scorsese continued. "At a certain point, we started to imagine that Tony would live forever. Of course he didn’t. Nobody does. But the music? That’s another story."

The beloved singer, doting husband and loving father is survived by his wife, Susan, his two sons, Danny and Dae Bennett, his daughters, Johanna Bennett and Antonia Bennett, and nine grandchildren.