Bono reveals he has a secret half-brother he only found out about as an adult


‘My father was going through a lot’: Bono reveals he has a secret half-brother he only found out about as an adult and is now ‘at peace with it’

Bono has revealed he has a secret half-brother he only found out about as an adult. 

The U2 singer, 62, told how he discovered he had another sibling in the year 2000 from an affair his father Bob had.

Speaking on BBC Radio’s Desert Island Discs, Bono said no one else in his family was aware of his other brother, including his mother Iris who died when he was 14.

Family: Bono has revealed he has a secret half-brother he only found out about as an adult (pictured in June 2022)

Family: Bono has revealed he has a secret half-brother he only found out about as an adult (pictured in June 2022) 

He said: ‘I do have another brother whom I love and adore that I didn’t know I had, or maybe I did.

‘My father was obviously going through a lot but partly his head was elsewhere because his heart was elsewhere.

‘So I think that was part of the problem I was picking up as a kid.’

Bono – whose real name is Paul Hewson – said he was aware his father had a ‘deep friendship’ with his half-brother’s mother, who he said is now part of their family.

Shock: The U2 singer, 62, told how he discovered he had another sibling in the year 2000 from an affair his father Bob had (pictured with his father in 2000)

Shock: The U2 singer, 62, told how he discovered he had another sibling in the year 2000 from an affair his father Bob had (pictured with his father in 2000)

He said: ‘It’s a very close family and I could tell that my father had a deep friendship with this gorgeous woman who is part of the family and then they had a child and this was all kept a secret.

‘I asked him (his father) did he love my mother and he said “yes”, and I asked him how could this happen and he said, “it can,” and that he was trying to put it right, trying to do the right thing.

‘He wasn’t apologising, he was just stating these are the facts. I’m at peace with it.’

Bono, who also has an older brother named Norman, added that he always had a ‘complicated relationship’ with his father, who passed away in 2001.

He said: ‘I’m sure I was hard to deal with and the annoying gene would have been very present. And he was coping with a lot. 

Discovery: Bono said no one else in his family was aware of his other brother, including his mother Iris who died when he was 14 (pictured in 2018)

Discovery: Bono said no one else in his family was aware of his other brother, including his mother Iris who died when he was 14 (pictured in 2018) 

‘I subsequently found out that he was coping with other stuff in his own life. I feel I wasn’t there for him in the way I should have been.’

The singer also revealed how he knelt in prayer in a candlelit French chapel seeking forgiveness from his late father for the way he treated him after his mother’s death.

The U2 frontman said he finally felt ‘free’ after the gesture which allowed him to dispel the guilt that had plagued him for years.

He said: ‘I went up to this little chapel, there was nobody there and I lit a candle and I got on my knees and said I’m sorry I wasn’t there for you, you went through a lot. And I felt free.’

Bono said: 'I do have another brother whom I love and adore that I didn't know I had, or maybe I did' (pictured in 2018)

Bono said: ‘I do have another brother whom I love and adore that I didn’t know I had, or maybe I did’ (pictured in 2018) 

Elsewhere in the interview, Bono, an outspoken anti-poverty campaigner, addressed charges of hypocrisy against U2 because of their legal, but controversial, overseas tax arrangements.

He said: ‘I think at the root of this [criticism] is a false idea that if you’re tough-minded in your activism you somehow have to be soft headed in your business.

Asked how he squares the tax set-up with his own moral compass, he added: ‘It is actually the fiduciary duty of a public company to control costs. This is a bit of a gotcha situation for U2.

‘There’s a lot of reasons not to like our band. This is not one of them. We pay a lot of tax, and we are very proud to pay tax.’

He added: 'It's a very close family and I could tell that my father had a deep friendship with this woman who is part of the family and then they had a child and this was all kept a secret'

He added: ‘It’s a very close family and I could tell that my father had a deep friendship with this woman who is part of the family and then they had a child and this was all kept a secret’

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