ROCK STAR DEATH Chester Bennington dead – Linkin Park singer ‘found hanged after suicide’ on the birthday of his late pal Chris Cornell

CHESTER Bennington, lead singer of rock band Linkin Park, has died aged 41.

The Los Angeles County coroner has confirmed the death of the star – with TMZ reporting he was found dead in a private residence in Palo Verdes Estates, Los Angeles.

Chester Bennington was found dead in a private residence in Los Angeles

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Chester Bennington was found dead in a private residence in Los Angeles

His body was discovered this morning just before 9am and it is believed that he hanged himself.

The singer is survived by his wife of twelve years, Talinda Ann Bennington (nee Bentley), and six children – Jamie, 21, Isaiah, 19, Draven, 15, Tyler Lee, 11, and Lily and Lila, 7.

He was previously married to Samantha Marie Olit from 1996 – 2005.

Chester, whose band Linkin Park spawned hit rock songs including Numb and Breaking the Habit, often focused his lyrics on personal struggle, depression and addiction.

Mike Shinoda, who also provided vocals for the band, confirmed the news on Twitter and wrote: “Shocked and heartbroken, but it’s true. An official statement will come out as soon as we have one.”

One of the band’s latest singles, Heavy, released four months ago, focused on the topic of depression.

Chester was seen smiling in the studio with his band mates and producer Watsky just FIVE days before his death

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Chester was seen smiling in the studio with his band mates and producer Watsky just FIVE days before his death

Chester’s band Linkin Park helped front a new wave of rock in the early 2000’s

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Chester’s band Linkin Park helped front a new wave of rock in the early 2000’s

It contained haunting lyrics including: “I don’t like my mind right now // Stacking up problems that are so unnecessary // Wish that I could slow things down”

In the chorus, he talks about how he is dragging around issues that are bringing him down before chillingly adding: “If I just let go, I’d be set free.”

He had also previously spoken about a previous battle with drug addiction, alcoholism and depression – admitting in December last year that he was even at one point on crack and crystal meth.

The star told Metal Hammer magazine: “I was on 11 hits of acid a day. I dropped so much acid I’m surprised I can still speak! I’d smoke a bunch of crack, do a bit of meth and just sit there and freak out. Then I’d smoke opium to come down.

Linkin Park is one of the 21st century's leading rock icons

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Linkin Park is one of the 21st century’s leading rock icons
“I weighed 110 pounds. My mom said I looked like I stepped out of Auschwitz. So I used pot to get off drugs.”

He had also previously revealed that he was molested at the age of seven by an unknown adult, and said: “If I think back to when I was really young, to when I was being molested, to when all these horrible things were going on around me, I shudder.”

Chester is survived by his wife and six children

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Chester is survived by his wife and six children
However, just days before his death, he was seen in the recording studio with his bandmates and Watsky, suggesting that he was currently in the process of collaborating with him.

The singer’s death comes on the birthday of his close pal Chris Cornell – the Soundgarden frontman who was found hanged in his hotel room back in May.

Linkin Park – which is currently completed by Mike Shinoda, Joe Hahn, Rob Bourdon and Brad Delson – hit the limelight with their debut album Hybrid Theory in 1999.

Chester had been open about his struggles in the past - including abuse as a child

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Chester had been open about his struggles in the past – including abuse as a child

Their global success continued with hit album Meteora in 2003.

Throughout their 21-year career, Chester acted as head lyricist for their songs.

They later became a crossover hit thanks to a collaborative album with Jay-Z in 2004, titled Collision Course.

The musicians combined their hip-hop styles and rap tracks together and created a new album using their hits, including Numb/Encore.

Their latest album, One More Light, was released earlier this year and they have only just returned from a UK tour culminating at London’s O2 Arena on July 3.

The band were working on new material before his death

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The band were working on new material before his death

They were due to start a tour with pop-punk band Blink 182, who are performing at the O2 tonight, next week.

Just three hours before Chester’s death was announced, the band had released the new music video for their latest offering, Talking to Myself.

The now poignant video followed the shenanigans of the band while on tour in a split screen montage, and saw them travel the world together.

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