Linkin Park singer Chester Bennington dead in apparent suicide: Coroner

VIDEO: REUTERS
Officials say Chester Bennington, the lead singer of rock band Linkin Park, has been found dead in Los Angeles in an apparent suicide.
US singer Chester Bennington of Linkin Park performs during the second day of the 43rd edition of the Pinkpop Music Festival at Landgraaf, in the south of the Netherlands, on May 27, 2012.
US singer Chester Bennington of Linkin Park performs during the second day of the 43rd edition of the Pinkpop Music Festival at Landgraaf, in the south of the Netherlands, on May 27, 2012. PHOTO: AFP

LOS ANGELES (REUTERS) - Chester Bennington, lead singer of rock band Linkin Park, was found dead on Thursday (July 20) at his southern California home in an apparent suicide, the Los Angeles County Coroner's office said.

Coroner's office spokesman Brian Elias said his office had been notified by law enforcement of the death of Bennington, 41, on Thursday morning. Elias said the death was being handled as an apparent suicide.

Celebrity website TMZ, citing law enforcement sources, said Bennington had hung himself at his Palos Verdes home near Los Angeles.

Linkin Park vocalist Mike Shinoda tweeted: "Shocked and heartbroken, but it's true. An official statement will come out as soon as we have one."

Bennington had a history of alcohol and drug abuse. He had spoken openly in the past about his struggles to overcome his demons when Linkin Park first found success in 2000 with the album Hybrid Theory. But in 2011, he said he had been sober for six years.

The band's latest studio album, One More Light, was released in May and Linkin Park embarked on a world tour.

Bennington's death came a week before the band were due to kick off the US leg of their tour on July 27 in Mansfield, Massachusetts.


Chester Bennington speaks before the band is inducted into Guitar Center's RockWalk in Los Angeles, on June 18, 2014. PHOTO: REUTERS

Bennington, who was twice married and had six children, was a close friend of Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell, who committed suicide in Detroit in May.

Fans noted on Thursday that Bennington had apparently taken his own life on what would have been Cornell's 53rd birthday.


Chester Bennington and wife Talinda arrive at the 2012 Billboard Music Awards in Las Vegas, on May 20, 2012. PHOTO: REUTERS

Bennington posted an emotional note on his social media accounts after Cornell's death. "I'm still weeping, with sadness, as well as gratitude for having shared some very special moments with you and your family," he wrote.


Members of rock band Linkin Park (from left) Mike Shinoda, Rob Bourdon, Joe Hahn, Brad Delson, Dave Farrell and Chester Bennington put their handprints in cement as they are inducted into Guitar Center's RockWalk in Los Angeles, on June 18, 2014. PHOTO: REUTERS

Linkin Park's debut album Hybrid Theory included hits such as In the End, One Step Closer and Crawling, which won a Grammy Award in 2002 for best hard rock performance.


Linkin Park, fronted by lead singer Chester Charles Bennington (right), performing at Rock in Rio USA 2015 music concert in Las Vegas, on May 9, 2015. PHOTO: AFP

The band experimented with rock, metal and rap, most notably collaborating with Jay-Z in 2004 on the Collision Course album. The album, a mash-up of the rapper's hits with Linkin Park songs, included Numb/Encore, which won a Grammy Award in 2006 for best rap/sung collaboration.


Chester Bennington performing at the Padang stage for the Singtel Singapore Grand Prix festivities, on Sept 25, 2011. PHOTO: MYPAPER

The band have sold more than 70 million albums worldwide.


Chester Bennington performs during a concert in Wroclaw, on June 5, 2014. PHOTO: EPA


Chester Bennington visiting Music Choice at Music Choice Studios in New York City, on Feb 21, 2017. PHOTO: AFP


Chester Bennington and Linkin Park perform at a sold-out concert at Madison Square Garden in Manhattan, on Feb 4, 2011. PHOTO: NYTIMES


Chester Bennington (right) and Mike Shinoda of Linkin Park rehearse before the MTV Music Video Awards, in New York, on Sept 2, 2001. PHOTO: NYTIMES