Jon Bon Jovi has told of his admiration for bandmate Richie Sambora as he battles his drink demons.
The guitarist checked into a rehab unit in Los Angeles in April (11) and was forced to pull out of a series of shows on the Livin' on a Prayer hitmakers' current world tour.
He finished his treatment earlier this month (Jun11) and has since rejoined the group, and singer Bon Jovi is full of pride at his pal's efforts to tackle his problems.
He tells Britain's Seven Days magazine, "It was great for Richie to go and take care of himself knowing full well he was not being fired or punished. He needed and wanted to seek help. Now he's focused, re-energised and everything is great. Our partnership is as strong as ever.
"Is Richie conquering his demons? How can I comment on that without knowing the disease? I think he's very cognisant of the situation and loves his mother, daughter and band more than anything in the world. I'm very proud of his efforts. He's still my dearest friend."