A parade of rock legends graced the Los Angeles funeral of Motörhead frontman Lemmy Kilmister, but the most emotional moment of the service came during Dave Grohl’s touching eulogy.
Lemmy passed away on December 28 after a short battle with an aggressive form of cancer, as the Inquisitr previously reported. He was 70.
A number of notable rock stars attended — Motörhead’s Mikkey Dee, GN’R drummer Matt Sorum, Anthrax’s Scott Ian, Judas Priest’s Rob Halford, Metallica’s Robert Trujillo and Lars Ulrich, and Alice in Chains’ Mike Inez — according to Rolling Stone. The services took place Saturday night at Los Angeles’ Forest Lawn Memorial Cemetery.
Before Dave Grohl took the stage for the eulogy, Guns ‘N’ Roses guitarist Slash said a few words about meeting the frontman with his band in London and being “f**king intimidated” by the musician.
“He is just somebody that I feel so honored to be friends with. He was such a f**king great example of what most of my peers all want to be: Somebody who was true to their school, someone who had more integrity in one finger than a room full of rock n’ rollers, and straight up honest and 100-percent loyal.”
But it was Dave Groh’s eulogy that ensured the services ended without a dry eye in the house. Standing next to the casket — decorated with flowers, photos, Motörhead insignias and Marshall amps — the Foo Fighters front man talked about the first time he met Kilmister: at an L.A. strip club.
Lemmy, whom Dave Grohl called his “hero,” was hanging out at the club playing a video game. Dave introduced himself as a member of Nirvana and the Foo Fighters, but the online stream of his eulogy was interrupted, and so Rolling Stone filled in the blanks based on Dave’s previous telling of the story.
The key part of the story was the first words Kilmister said to him: “Sorry about your friend Kurt [Cobain].”
Dave’s eulogy then moved onto a second story, about when he ran into his hero backstage at a concert. Grohl introduced him to his family, including his newborn daughter. At the time, the musician had a whisky and cigarette in hand, but upon seeing the baby in her crib, extinguished his cigarette in his drink.
All these years later, it’s a simple act Grohl still remembers and appreciates.
“To most people, that would seem like nothing, I suppose. But to me, that was my hero putting out his cigarette into his drink and putting it aside because my daughter was there in the room. I think what everybody has always known or at least learned today is that Lemmy was not only that kind of … whiskey-drinking rock and roll star, but he had the biggest heart and set such a great example because he was so kind to everyone.”
And then came the most touching part of Dave’s eulogy — he and Lemmy’s shared love of Little Richard. No one wanted to meet him more than his friend, he said. Then, one day at LAX airport, Grohl was able to meet the legendary singer in his limo, where he gave him an autographed biblical pamphlet.
During his eulogy, Grohl slipped the very same pamphlet from a jacket pocket and broke down.
“I wanted to give it to him for his birthday,” Grohl said, then read a psalm called “Precious Lord, Take My Hand” before saying goodbye to Lemmy amid amplifier distortion from a bass guitar.
Notably absent from the funeral were former Motörhead guitarists Phil Campbell and ‘Fast’ Eddie Clarke, but their reasons weren’t spiteful. Campbell, who has been the band’s guitarist since 1984, was unable to go because his doctors told him not to fly after a recent surgery, NME reported.
A much more rock n’ roll reason came from Clarke, who was in the band from 1976 to 1982: he couldn’t get a visa to the U.S. because of “past sins.”
[Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images]