“When I was a guy in my 20s getting out of it, I didn’t realise I’d have these (drug) problems for my whole life. I didn’t think I’d be in one of the biggest bands in the world with a beautiful family at 41 going ‘F—, I could have easily have blacked out driving my car again two months ago’.” They were some of the words said from Linkin Park front man Chester Bennington in his final Australian interview back in March. Hinting at his relapse with substance abuse but stating he had turned his life around.
Linkin Park had sold close to a million albums in Australia, with their debut Hybrid Theory selling over 350,000 copies alone. The new album, said to be their poppiest effort, caused division amongst LP fans, some of whom accused the band of selling out by leaving their trademark darker sound behind. While the album charted highly around the world when released in May sales had quickly declined after a string of mixed reviews. Bennington’s son wrote a peaceful note urging his dad to “love life” just weeks before the rock star took his own life. Bennington was found dead by a housekeeper in the bedroom of his Los Angeles home just before 9am local time. It is being treated as a suspected suicide.
The rock singer has a beautiful wife of twelve years, Talinda Ann Bennington and six children, Jamie, 21, Isaiah, 19, Draven, 15, Tyler Lee, 11, and Lily and Lila, 7. They were not present in the house when the incident took place, it is believed Bennington was alone. The week prior Bennington’s son Tyler left a post-it note on his father’s coffee mug, telling him to enjoy his day. “Dad, enjoy your rehersal or whatever your doing today, Love life because it’s a ‘Casltel of Glass’.”
The body of Chester Bennington has been removed from his home as a coroner confirmed the Linkin Park frontman had taken his own life. A group of police and coroner authorities were seen wheeling the body into a van outside the singer’s California home on Friday. That morning Los Angeles County coroner confirmed Bennington had killed himself. Coroner’s office spokesman Ed Winter said a half-empty bottle of alcohol was found in the room where he died, but no drugs were evident. Bennington had struggled for years with drug addiction.
Bennington’s death has left fans and musicians in utter shock and disbelief. “Shocked and heartbroken, but it’s true. An official statement will come out as soon as we have one.” was tweeted from Linkin Park co-founder Mike Shinoda. Linkin Park were scheduled to embark on an extensive North American tour with punk band Blink 182, with the first concerts scheduled to take place on July 27 in Massachusetts. TMZ reported that Bennington had plans with his bandmates in the morning after his death, with one bandmate arriving at his house to find police already there. He had made plans to drive Bennington to a photo shoot. Just hours before his death, the band had released a video for its latest single “Talking To Myself” with lyrics now taking new meaning. The song appears to take the point of view from Bennington’s wife, as she begs him to control his substance abuse. Bennington had wrestled with alcohol and drugs since he was a pre-teen struggling to cope with his parents’ divorce.
“I was getting beaten up and being forced to do things I didn’t want to do. It destroyed my self-confidence, like most people, I was too afraid to say anything. I didn’t want people to think I was gay or that I was lying,” he told a British music site back in 2014. Bennington was close friends with Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell and took his own life on what would of been Cornell’s 53rd birthday.
An abundance of tributes flew through twitter with the announcement of the front man’s passing, with bands like One Republic, Imagine Dragons, and celebrities like Josh Groban, Jimmy Kimmel and more expressing there sadness. Hayley Williams from Paramore tweeted these wise words “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….. & maybe at times made more vulnerable by it? i don’t know. life can be relentless. heart hurts for Chester’s family/band/friends/fans.”
Today pop singer Ellie Goulding tweeted her thoughts on the passing of Bennington saying “So important to talk about how you’re feeling. Especially men who in the past have felt as though they can’t. Nothing to be ashamed of”.
Our thoughts are with the band and Bennington’s family at this time.
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