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Linkin Park’s Chester Bennington commits suicide

A decades-spanning career saw the singer collab with Jay Z, Stormzy and Eminem

Linkin Park singer Chester Bennington has committed suicide. According to TMZ, he hanged himself in his Palos Verdes Estates home in LA county. He was 41 years old. The singer is survived by his wife, Talinda, and six children.

Bennington was a massive part of Linkin Park’s early success, helping shape the alt-rock landscape that ruled the early 2000s. Songs like “Numb” and “In The End” dominated the charts, and Linkin Park’s album Meteora has sold over 27 million copies worldwide.

Previously, Bennington spoke about how he had considered suicide because of the sexual abuse he experienced at the hands of an older man. “If I think back to when I was really young, to when I was being molested, to when all these horrible things were going on around me, I shudder,” he told Kerrang! back in 2011.

Bennington also harboured an on-again-off-again relationship with drugs and alcohol, also admitting in 2011 that he was a “full blown, raging alcoholic”. He worked on getting sober, however, admitting, “I don’t drink. I choose to be sober now. I have drunk over the last six years, but I just don’t want to be that person anymore.”

He also shared an open letter on Twitter in the wake of Chris Cornell’s death. “I'd like to think you were saying goodbye in your own way,” he wrote. “I can’t imagine a world without you in it. I pray you find peace in the next life.”

Even once music tastes changed, Linkin Park found ways to stay on the charts. Most recently, they collaborated with Stormzy and Pusha T for “Good Goodbye”. “We like Stormzy and we think that he’s dope,” Bennington said of the collab. “Little did we know that, he was about to take over the world.” They also included Jay Z in their mashup EP, Collision Course, and famously made a handful of songs together with Eminem on Collision Course II.

Despite his demons, Bennington was a hero to so many. He was able to effectively channel his struggles into extremely listenable music that continues to leak out of headphones the world over. “I have been able to tap into all the negative things that can happen to me throughout my life by numbing myself to the pain so to speak and kind of being able to vent it through my music,” he told SPIN back in 2009.

RIP Chester Bennington.

If you or someone you know feels suicidal, depressed or a sense of despair, please call Samaritans for helpful, non-judgemental advice and support on 116 123 (UK)