Dee Cernile, the guitarist for Canadian hard-rock band Sven Gali, passed away Saturday, Feb. 25, at the age of 46 after a battle with lung cancer.

Sven Gali hit the height of their fame in the early '90s when their 1992 self-titled debut earned the band multiple nominations for the Juno Awards, Canada's equivalent to the Grammys.

Their second album, 1995's 'Inwire,' was produced by Queensryche guitarist Kelly Gray and featured guest spots from Blind Melon axeman Christopher Thorn as well as Candlebox frontman Kevin Martin and drummer Scott Mercado.

The group broke up in 1996 but re-formed in 2007. Sadly, Cernile was diagnosed with cancer in 2009.

A post on Cernile's Facebook page reads:

"After such a courageous journey, two days ago Dee told us that he had nothing more to do here and he wanted to pass away to do what he needed to do elsewhere. This morning Dee got his wish and took his last breath. He went so very peacefully with love surrounding him and his hand held. He is now resting in peace. His family would like to thank everyone for all of your love and support."

David Bendeth, who produced Sven Gali's first album and has since gone onto produce discs by Papa Roach and Breaking Benjamin, shared his memories of Cernile with Billboard: "Dee was a great guitarist, singer, and songwriter who always wore his heart on his sleeve," remarked Bendeth. "His love of music and life made him a true rockstar. He will be missed by many that had the great fortune to work with him and hear that great infectious laugh."

Cernile was working on material for an album with a new band in his final months. We send our condolences to Cernile's family members and bandmates.

Watch the Sven Gali Video for 'Under the Influence'