Last night a friend and I were reminiscing about how much we used to love (and frankly, still love) Linkin Park’s music. A legendary ’emo’ band of the early 2000’s, Linkin Park provided us with iconic songs such as “Numb”, “In The End”, and my personal favorite, “Shadow Of The Day”. After a long discussion of their music, I went to bed with a smile on my face, remembering the great memories those songs had given me.
This afternoon, the news broke that Chester Bennington, lead singer of Linkin Park, had committed suicide.
While this isn’t the first time I experienced the loss of a well-loved artist (I had lost Cory Monteith back in 2013, while I also lost my hero, Christina Grimmie, to a tragic murder just last year), the chills I got while reading over BNO News’s article took a while to subside. Again, I was reminded of the same feeling I had when I accepted Christina’s death: our idols, our beloved celebrities, are not as far away from human as we would like them to be. To use the famous old adage, they bleed just the same as we do. We never think our favorite celebrities, especially those young of age, are susceptible to premature death. Cory Monteith’s drug overdose shocked Glee fans across the world. Christina Grimmie’s murder reminded me personally that our heroes are never, ever invincible, nor are they ever truly protected enough. Chester Bennington’s suicide is no exception.
No one ever expects someone they love to commit suicide. They especially don’t expect celebrities to do such a thing, especially when said celebrity seemed to be doing just fine, touring and recording music as normal. Chester was doing just that. Linkin Park had embarked on their ‘One More Light’ tour, and were recently seen in the studio with rapper Watsky. No fan could have suspected that Chester would even be considering suicide at that point. His death was a sudden, tragic move that leaves fans mourning and confused today.
We don’t know, of course, the major details of Chester’s suicide. According to BNO News, no suicide note was left, but today was the birthday of Chester’s close friend and fellow artist Chris Cornell, who had committed suicide in May. In addition, Chester had previously confessed about struggling with drug addiction and suicidal thoughts in the past, but of course such statements weren’t recent enough to warn us about Chester’s impeding struggle.
Overall, it’s important to not let Chester Bennington’s death be forgotten as just another celebrity who lost themselves in their path to fame. Let his suicide be a reminder that people are always, always struggling whether we see it ourselves or not. This includes not just ordinary people in our day to day life, but also, if not especially, celebrities. Our favorite people in the industry, actors, singers, musicians, etc., are not invincible. We could lose them at any moment, and for that reason it is important to be thankful for the art they’ve given us, as well as to constantly support them. Our heroes tend to provide us hope in our darkest moments, but it is important to remember that even they can experience just as much hopelessness as ourselves.
Rest in peace Chester Bennington. Your legacy will not be forgotten.