His representative Brian Bumbery confirmed the sad news. He called Cornell’s death “sudden and unexpected” and stated that his family would be “working closely with the medical examiner to determine the cause.”
Regrettably, most sources seem to believe the cause of death was suicide. A spokesperson for the Detroit Police Department said officers responded to a call at the MGM Grand. Cornell’s wife had evidently called a family friend to check on Cornell. The family friend forces his way into the hotel room, where he found him unresponsive in the bathroom.
Police confirmed that he had a band around his neck. For now, they are referring to his death as an “apparent suicide.”
Fans of Soundgarden are especially distraught over the news. Though the band split up for a while in 1997, their hit albums from the 1990s have remained wildly influential. Lumped in with the likes of Nirvana and Pearl Jam, they helped shift the musical world into a gritty, grungy space. Thanks to Soundgarden’s popularity, three of their albums have been certified platinum.
In 2010, Chris Cornell and guitarist Kim Thayil, bassist Ben Shepherd and drummer Matt Cameron reunited and even put out a new album. Ever since then, they’ve been successfully touring.
Unfortunately, Cornell struggled with drug use throughout this entire period. He admitted to abusing OxyContin and even went to rehab. However, no signs indicated that he was suicidal. In fact, he was posting on Twitter just hours before his death.
— Chris Cornell (@chriscornell) May 18, 2017
More news is sure to surface in the coming weeks. In the meantime, we’re hoping all of Chris Cornell’s loved ones are finding ways to get through this difficult time.