The woman who appeared on the cover of the famous Woodstock album died wrapped in a blanket cuddling her boyfriend during a festival in 1969.
Bobby Kelly Ercolin passed away over the weekend after a long illness, according to her husband of 54 years, Nick Ercolin, who had only been dating her for a few months when the photo was taken.
The exact cause of death was not revealed, but Nick wrote that his wife was surrounded by family when she passed away.
Her age has not been revealed either, but the couple was 20 when they were snapped at the legendary festival, which takes place over the weekend of August 15-18, 1969.
In a Facebook post this weekend, Nick wrote: “It is with great sadness that I have told my family and Facebook friends, that after 54 years of life together, of the death last night of my beautiful wife, Poppy, surrounded by her family.
1970’s Woodstock: Music from the Original Soundtrack and More album cover
A photo of Bobby Kelly Ercolin and Nick Ercolin appeared in Nick’s Facebook post announcing her death
She lived her life well, and left this world in a much better place. If you know her, you love her. She lived by saying, “Be nice.”
He added, “She didn’t deserve last year’s nightmare, but she is no longer in physical pain and that brings us some relief.”
The couple was photographed by Burke Uzzle of Magnum Photography Agency in a recognizable shot that sums up the mood of the festival.
Bobby is shown staring toward the camera in a pair of thick, yellow sunglasses, draped over a pink and white blanket Nick wears, on a hillside full of revelers.
The picture became the Woodstock cover: Music from the Original Soundtrack and More – a triple vinyl LP released in May 1970 to accompany a festival concert film.
Bobbi and Nick heard about the festival on the radio in 1969.
The Woodstock Music and Arts Fair was taking place at Max Yasgur’s farm in Bethel, New York, about an hour away from their home in Middletown, New York.
The next day, their friend borrowed his mom’s white 1965 Chevrolet Impala station wagon, and they filled it up with alcohol before setting off on Route 17. They eventually abandoned the car four or five miles from the festival grounds after an alcohol-soaked ride. traffic jam.
“As we were walking inside, I picked up the blanket because I thought we needed something to sit on,” said Bobby. It just got dumped, so I covered it up hence the pink blanket.
A view of part of the audience as they watch a performance at the Woodstock Music and Art Fair, Bethel, New York, August 1969. The festival ran from August 15th to 18th.
People clapping at the Woodstock Music Festival, New York, USA, August 16, 1969
People on their way to the Woodstock Music Festival, 1969
“I remember the atmosphere vividly: the sky was pink-orange from the lights, and it was hazy,” Bobby wrote in a 2015 article for the Guardian.
I could hear the music and advertisements in the distance. Around us were families, couples, people yelling, babies crying, yodeling, banjo, bongo. The air was damp and smelled of campfires and pot. I’ve never seen anything like this.
The couple also noted that the sound from the hillside was amazing.
The festival would become an emblem of the counterculture of the 1960s, as it would feature performances by Jimi Hendrix, Sly and the Family Stone, and Janis Joplin, among others.
The couple met in 1969 while Nick was a bartender at Dino’s Bar and Grill in Middletown, New York.
They started seeing each other in May of that year, a few months before the festival.
Nick and Bobby became engaged on Christmas Eve 1970 and married on August 27, 1971, just after the second anniversary of Woodstock, at St. Paul’s Catholic Church in Paulville, New York.
Nick and Bobby Ercolin, the couple featured on the cover of the Woodstock album, pose together at the location where the photo was taken 50 years ago, in Bethel, New York, US, June 12, 2019.
They have two sons: Matta, born in 1979, and Luke, born in 1981.
When the record came out several months later, they noticed the orange and yellow butterfly flag on the cover.
The five of us gathered at Corky’s apartment to listen to her. And all of a sudden he recognized the yellow butterfly wand on the left, which belonged to this guy Herbie who we’ve been taking care of, as he’s been stumbling so hard and missing his friends,” said Bobby. But then he said, “Stop! This is you and Nick.”
Bobby added, “The significance of Woodstock has grown with each passing year. It was a special event: half a million people gathered in the name of peace, without violence. It happened on the cusp of great change in America – the civil rights movement, the pill, Vietnam.”
On Woodstock’s 20th anniversary, in 1989, the couple were publicly identified as having appeared in the photo. They visited the site in 2019 to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the festival.
Bobby said they wanted Woodstock’s image to inspire a message of peace, love and hope for generations to come.
Nick said that when Poppy was at a hospice, she made her husband promise her three things before she died.
These were: ‘1. No more hospitals 2. Home is where you’ll stay 3. When it’s time for her to go, I’ll meet her.
“I was able to deliver on those 3 promises when sweetheart Bobby passed out of this world while I had our sons next to you,” Nick wrote in an emotional follow-up message.
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