On July 20, 2017, Linkin Park singer Chester Bennington tragically committed suicide.
Today, on the one-year anniversary of his death, his former bandmates paid tribute to him on social media.
“To our brother Chester. It has been a year since your passing — a surreal rotation of grief, heartbreak, refusal, and recognition,” said the group in a letter that was posted on Twitter.
“And yet it still feels like you are close by, surrounding us with your memory and your light. Your one-of-a-kind spirit has authored an indelible imprint on our hearts — our jokes, our joy, and our tenderness. Eternally grateful for the love, life, and creative passion you shared with us and the world. We miss you more than words can express.”
The note was signed, using the first letter of each member’s first name, by the remaining Linkin Park members: Mike Shinoda, Joe Hahn, Dave “Phoenix” Farrell, Rob Bourdon, and Brad Delson.
At the end of the letter, the rock outfit added the phone number for the Suicide Prevention Lifeline, 1-800-273-TALK, for those that may need help.
The tweet also included a unique hashtag:
Co-frontman Shinoda expressed his own sorrow in an additional post, featuring a cassette labeled “XERO — Rough Mixes,” which was the name the band went by in its earliest incarnation, and was also the title of their 1996 4-track demo.
“No photo is the right photo, no words are the right words. I’ve spent the morning revisiting old memories,” he wrote on Instagram.
“Thank you all for honoring his insane talent, unstoppable passion, and huge heart today. Keep your head up, and take care of yourselves.”
Bassist Farrell also shared a heartfelt message on Instagram, along with a photograph of Bennington smiling behind a guitar.
“In the past year, there hasn’t been a day that has gone by that I haven’t thought of you,” he wrote to his late friend.
“I miss you, and it still hurts to not have you here…. A year after your passing, I still struggle to try and eloquently express what you mean to your family, your friends, your fans… and to me. There is so much that I feel, and that I could say, and that I would want to say, and that I don’t know how to say… but one thing I know for certain is that you are loved, and you are missed. Be Well My Friend.”
Bennington was just 41 when he took his own life by hanging himself in his California home.
He chose July 20 because it was the birthday of his late friend, Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell, who had committed suicide himself just two months earlier.
Bennington, who had battled depression and alcoholism, sang a version of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” at Cornell’s funeral.
The “In the End” singer left behind a wife, Talinda Bennington, and six children, 22-year-old Jaime, 20-year-old Isaiah, 16-year-old Draven, 12-year-old Tyler, and 6-year-old twins Lilly and Lila.
Talinda spoke to Los Angeles’ Fox 11 News about her late husband and suicide in a new interview that first aired last night, July 19.
The woman that started the campaign 320 Changes Direction to address the needs of those suffering with mental health concerns said she planned to spend the anniversary of Bennington’s death quietly with friends and family.
Watch Talinda’s interview below.