A.j. Pero passed away at the age of 55 in March (15), and his death was subsequently attributed to a heart attack.

Snider later caused controversy by criticising his late friend for failing to acknowledge his family's history of heart disease, insisting Pero "never had himself checked out."

The singer has now defended his comments and declared the tragedy should convince others to take their health more seriously.

In an episode of his Snider Comments podcast, Snider says, "He died at 55... that's not old at all. And I don't think A.J. was ready to go... (What I said) was the truth... I spoke out about A.J. because I'm hurt, and his family is hurt, and (the) world he left behind is in complete turmoil as a result of it... I had an opportunity to remind people that, 'Hey, heart disease is just that - it's a disease'. Don't put your head in the sand and don't pretend that there's no problem when you know your whole family has a history of any sickness - of cancer, of heart disease, of prostate problems... of whatever it is...

"Everybody should get checked out, but especially if you're genetically predisposed. And when you have children, young children, like A.J. had, it's not just about you..."

Pero was a father of four.