Chester Bennington’s Friends Cast Doubt on Connection Between His Suicide and Chris Cornell’s

On July 20, Chester Bennington was found dead by hanging in his L.A. home. That same day, Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell would have turned 53. On May 18, he too committed suicide by hanging. 

The singers were close, and Bennington even performed at Cornell’s funeral, leading to speculation that his suicide was related to Cornell’s.

Chester Bennington performs the song “Hallelujah” at Chris Cornell’s funeral on May 26, 2017. (Photo: AP)

But close friends are casting doubt on that theory. Ryan Shuck played guitar with Bennington in a side project, and told Rolling Stone: “[Cornell’s death] could be a part of it, but it’s a small part of it. I think that it’s just another horrible event that gets put in your subconscious. It’s kindling, but the fire was already burning.”

Instead, Shuck and others believe that an alcohol relapse and Bennington’s personal demons played a greater role.

A bottle of alcohol was reportedly found near Bennington’s body, although, according to Shuck, Bennington had been sober for six months prior to his death. But even then, Shuck recalls the singer texting him about his struggles: “He was describing an hour-by-hour battle with addiction. When I look at it now, it’s horrifying. He was telling me, down to the detail, what he would do in the first hour he wanted to drink.”

On July 29, Bennington was honored at a private service attended by bandmates, friends, and family.

Chester Bennington’s death shocked the world:

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