A day after Prince’s death stunned his fans and fellow musicians, the work of finding out why the music icon died began in earnest Friday. Why did Prince die? Latest Autopsy details

An autopsy was conducted Friday at the Midwest Medical Examiner’s Office in Ramsey, Minnesota, but it could be days or weeks before results are complete, the agency said. The autopsy began at 9 a.m. CT (10 a.m. ET) and lasted four hours, the office said.

The Carver County, Minnesota, Sheriff’s Office announced a Friday afternoon news conference, but the medical examiner’s office said that, for its part, it “will not release information until the exam is complete and all results are obtained.”

Prince, whose full name was Prince Rogers Nelson, died Thursday at age 57. He was found unresponsive in an elevator at his studios in Chanhassen, Minnesota. Paramedics tried to perform CPR but were unable to revive him, authorities said. He was pronounced dead at 10:07 a.m., less than 30 minutes after sheriff’s deputies responded to a medical call at the scene.

An outpouring of grief followed as fans paid tribute to the singer who masterfully blended rock, R&B, jazz, funk and pop. Just this month, Prince made news after he postponed two shows he’d been scheduled to perform at the Fox Theatre in Atlanta.”The entertainer is battling the flu,” the Fox said in a statement that day.

A week later, he took the stage in Atlanta to perform two concerts with 80-minute sets, unusually short for him. The stage was engulfed in lavender smoke. It was just Prince at his piano. He played his classic songs but kept the mood light and fun — at one point showing off his skills with a version of the Peanuts theme song.

Prince’s last days

But as Prince headed back home to Minnesota, he made an emergency landing April 15 and was reportedly rushed to a hospital in Moline, Illinois. His publicist later said he was fine.

On Saturday, he appeared before a small gathering of fans at a Paisley Park dance party, proudly showing them a new purple Yamaha piano and a guitar that was made for him in Europe. The appearance, Minneapolis Star Tribune music critic Jon Bream wrote the next day, seemed aimed at proving he was alive and well.
“He never intended to perform on Saturday. There was no microphone stand next to his piano,” Bream wrote. “He just wanted to demonstrate that reports of his dire health were greatly exaggerated.”

The music critic noted that Prince showed off his new guitar but didn’t perform with it. “I have to leave it in the case, or I’ll be tempted to play it,” Prince told the crowd, according to Bream. “I can’t play the guitar at all these days, so I can keep my mind on this (the solo piano) and get better.”
During that appearance, Prince made a passing reference to the emergency landing his plane had made in Illinois, according to fans. “He basically said, when you hear news, give it a few days before you waste any prayers,” DJ Michael Holz told WCCO-TV.