Linkin Park’s frontman Chester Bennington, was found dead at his Palo Verdes Estate on Thursday. Police confirmed the celebrated singer took his life at 41 years old. Chester is survived by his wife and his six children. Fans and friends took to social media to pay a heartfelt tribute. His incredible talent and kind personality will always be remembered.
Chester’s suicide date matches Chris Cornell’s birthday
Thursday marked a sad day for the music industry after news broke that Chester Bennington committed suicide at his California home. At about 9 a.m. on Thursday, police responded to a call of a dead body in a Palos Verdes Estates home. Which turned out to be the location of Bennington’s private residence, law enforcement said in a statement.
A spokesperson for the Los Angeles Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner said that an employee found Bennington hanging in the bedroom of the home. A bottle of alcohol was also found in the room, though it was not near his body, Winter said. Investigators did not find a note in the room. An autopsy is pending.
Bennington had struggled with depression and substance abuse throughout his life.
He also appeared to be deeply impacted by the loss of Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell, who died in May and was good friends with Bennington. Sources say he was never the same after Cornell’s dead.
The Linkin Park frontman died on what would have been Cornell’s 53rd birthday.
Linkin Park bandmate Mike Shinoda commented on Bennington’s death on Thursday, tweeting, “Shocked and heartbroken, but it’s true.” The band most recently released album “One More Light” earlier this year, as well as a music video for “Talking to Myself” earlier Thursday morning.
Bennington marked a before and after in the industry
Chester Charles Bennington was born on March 20, 1976, in Phoenix, the youngest of four children. His mother was a nurse and his father a local police detective prone to pulling double shifts.
Bennington often described his childhood as unhappy, citing his parents’ divorce when he was 11 and frequent molestation by an older friend. Beginning when he was “about 7 or 8” and continuing until he was 13. He found heaven in writing poetry, painting, and music. More than once he said that music literally saved him.
He began performing in his teens and in the late 1990s was introduced to several members of the band that would become Linkin Park by Zombie Music Publishing executive Jeff Blue. Even when the group struggled to find a record deal it became a huge success. The band was signed by Warner Bros. Records and released their debut album, ‘Hybrid Theory’ in 2000.
It went on to become one of the most successful rock bands of the decade, and this was amid the pop frenzy in the 2000s. ‘Hybrid Theory’ was certified diamond by the RIAA, and the 2003’s ensuing albums ‘Meteora’ and 2007’s ‘Minutes to Midnight’ reached multi-platinum sales as well.
In 2004 the group recorded a “mashup EP” called “Collision Course” with rapper Jay Z.
The group’s combination of heavy riffs, Bennington’s alternately melodic and gutteral vocals, and Mike Shinoda’s rapping led them to be lumped in with the “nu-metal” of bands like Limp Bizkit and Papa Roach. But the group railed against the term and branched out musically via solo efforts, remix albums and more experimental work on albums like the Rick Rubin-produced “A Thousand Suns.”
The group continued to defy expectations in the coming years, getting arguably heavier than ever with ‘The Hunting Party’ in 2014 and following it with a pop-oriented album, ‘One More Light,’ earlier this year.
Fan and media reaction to the group’s most recent change of direction was often hostile.
Bennington and Cornell’s friendship
Thursday was also the birthday of Chris Cornell, Soundgarden singer and a good friend of Bennington’s who died by suicide in May. Bennington sang Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” at Cornell’s funeral in May.
He also wrote a heartfelt letter to Cornell.
“You have inspired me in many ways you could never have known. Your talent was pure and unrivalled,” he said. “Your voice was joy and pain, anger and forgiveness, love and heartache all wrapped up into one. I suppose that’s what we all are. You helped me understand that.”
Bennington was godfather to one of Cornell’s children. Tragically, Bennington committed suicide on what would have been Cornell’s birthday. Cornell was born on July 20, 1964.
Bennington’s many fans, peers, and collaborators in music and entertainment offered their condolences and shared their memories of the singer on social media, including Rihanna, Hayley Williams of Paramore, Chance the Rapper, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Ryan Adams, Pusha T and Jimmy Kimmel.
Others, also took the opportunity to speak out about the importance of addressing mental health issues as well.
Gracious, kind & humble. A rare combination in Rock & Roll. Deeply saddened… pic.twitter.com/cVtNEzrjHD
— Lars Ulrich (@larsulrich) July 20, 2017
RIP Chester. Tragic ending. Condolences his family and friends and Linkin Park 🙏🏾
— Lil Chano From 79th (@chancetherapper) July 20, 2017
Chester was one of the kindest men I've had on my show. My heart breaks for his family and friends. He will be missed terribly.
— Jimmy Kimmel (@jimmykimmel) July 20, 2017
I'm holding on
Why is everything so heavy?
So much more than I can carry… pic.twitter.com/MQfyRjGbTw
— Elvis Duran (@elvisduran) July 20, 2017
— Timbaland (@Timbaland) July 20, 2017
Oh dear God. Massive R.I.P to Chester Bennington of @linkinpark this BREAKS OUR HEART. Suicide is the devil on earth walking amongst us 😞
— OneRepublic (@OneRepublic) July 20, 2017
RIP The legend Chester. You were were and will continue to be a huge inspiration to us.
— THE CHAINSMOKERS (@TheChainsmokers) July 20, 2017
artists are ppl compelled to bring beauty into a world that can be so dark. makes sense then that artists are always conscious of darkness..
— hayley from Paramore (@yelyahwilliams) July 20, 2017
RIP to Chester Bennington and my sincerest condolences to his family, friends, and the Linkin Park family. Truly unique, humble frontman.
— Justin Timberlake (@jtimberlake) July 21, 2017
So sorry to hear the news about Chester Bennington. Sending so much luv, strength & light to his family, kids & @linkinpark ohana.
— Dwayne Johnson (@TheRock) July 20, 2017
Source: Rolling Stone