Mick Fleetwood, the band's drummer and a founding member, told Reuters that Welch's presumed suicide was "incredibly out of character." Fleetwood remained close with Welch after he left the band in 1975 to pursue a solo career, and even served as Welch's manager for a while.
"He was a very, very profoundly intelligent human being and always in good humor, which is why this is so unbelievably shocking," Fleetwood said. "He was a huge part of our history which sometimes gets forgotten... mostly his legacy would be his songwriting abilities that he brought to Fleetwood Mac, which will survive all of us."
Fleetwood Mac singer Stevie Nicks, who joined the band after Welch left, also commented on his death in a statement. "He was an amazing guitar player—he was funny, sweet—and he was smart," Nicks wrote. "I'm so very sorry for his family and for the family of Fleetwood Mac—so, so sad."