clear
Friday August 18th, 2017 4:45AM

Family of musician Chris Cornell disputes he killed himself

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

DETROIT (AP) — Rock musician Chris Cornell's wife on Friday disputed "inferences" that the rocker killed himself in a Detroit hotel room, saying he may have taken more of an anti-anxiety drug than he was prescribed.

The Wayne County Medical Examiner's Office said Cornell — the lead singer in Soundgarden and Audioslave — hanged himself early Thursday morning after performing at a concert Wednesday night. But Cornell's family said that without toxicology test results completed they don't know what caused his death.

On Friday, an official said the results of a full autopsy and toxicology tests could take days before they are completed and released.

Cornell, 52, was found unresponsive in his hotel room hours after he performed at a Soundgarden concert. According to the Detroit News, a police report says Cornell's bodyguard gave him two prescription pills for anxiety after the concert. The bodyguard later found Cornell on the bathroom floor of his room with an exercise band around his neck, the newspaper reported.

The newspaper said it obtained the police report but doesn't say how.

Vicky Cornell, Cornell's wife, said that when she spoke to her husband after the Detroit show, he told her he may have taken "an extra Ativan or two." According to lawyer Kirk Pasich, the musician had a prescription for the anti-anxiety drug. Ativan, a sedative, has side effects that can include drowsiness and dizziness, according to the National Institutes of Health.

"Without the results of toxicology tests, we do not know what was going on with Chris — or if any substances contributed to his demise," Pasich said in a statement released to The Associated Press. "Chris, a recovering addict, had a prescription for Ativan and may have taken more Ativan than recommended dosages.

"The family believes that if Chris took his life, he did not know what he was doing, and that drugs or other substances may have affected his actions."

Cornell has battled addiction problems in the past. He told Rolling Stone in a 1994 interview that he started using drugs at age 13, and was kicked out of school at 15.

"I went from being a daily drug user at 13 to having bad drug experiences and quitting drugs by the time I was 14, and then not having any friends until the time I was 16," he said. "There was about two years where I was more or less agoraphobic and didn't deal with anybody, didn't talk to anybody, didn't have any friends at all.

"All the friends that I had were still (messed) up with drugs and were people that I didn't really have anything in common with."

Vicky Cornell said her husband slurred his words when she spoke with him after the Detroit show. She said "he was different," and she contacted security to check on him.

"What happened is inexplicable, and I am hopeful that further medical reports will provide additional details," she said. "I know that he loved our children and he would not hurt them by intentionally taking his own life."

Cornell was a leader of the grunge movement with Seattle-based Soundgarden — with whom he gained critical and commercial acclaim. He also found success outside the band with other projects, including Audioslave, Temple of the Dog, and solo albums. Soundgarden's current tour kicked off in late April and was planned to run through May 27.

Grief-stricken fans left flowers at memorials across Seattle on Thursday for the musician whose forceful, somber songs helped cement the city's place in rock history.

One of the locations where people gathered was the Sound Garden art sculpture at a Seattle park, for which Soundgarden was named.

"It's really sad that he could never find peace in his life," said Chad White, who came to the art display with his young son, Ignatius, to honor Cornell.

The city's Space Needle went dark at 9 p.m. for an hour in tribute to Cornell.

Cornell was born and raised in the city and was part of a close-knit group of artists who formed the foundation of what would become the grunge scene that exploded in the early 1990s, by combining the bombast of early 1970s heavy metal with the aggression and attitude of punk rock.

___

Fekadu reported from New York City. Associated Press reporter Chris Grygiel in Seattle contributed to this report.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top General short headlines, AP Entertainment, AP Online Recordings News, APOnline Celebrity News
© Copyright 2017 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Family of musician Chris Cornell disputes he killed himself
The family of musician Chris Cornell is refuting a medical examiner's finding that the Soundgarden frontman killed himself after performing in Detroit
8:10AM ( 19 minutes ago )
Sweden drops case, but WikiLeaks' Assange not in the clear
Swedish prosecutors have dropped their investigation into a rape allegation against Julian Assange, almost seven years after it began and five years after the WikiLeaks founder sought refuge inside Ecuador's London embassy to avoid extradition
8:02AM ( 27 minutes ago )
Ivanka Trump to take part in presidential trip
Ivanka Trump will travel with the president to Saudi Arabia, Israel and Italy on his upcoming foreign trip
8:02AM ( 27 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Kobe Bryant dishes an assist to test-weary high schoolers
Kobe Bryant has come through with an assist for some high school students in Indiana by getting them out of a final exam
7:10AM ( 1 hour ago )
Here comes Pippa: Britain's almost-royal wedding on the way
She played a memorable supporting role at sister Kate's 2011 wedding, but Pippa Middleton will take center stage Saturday, and her wedding looks to be the high society event of the year
6:54AM ( 1 hour ago )
Cannes apologizes for projection snafu with Netflix's 'Okja'
As if Netflix's entry into the Cannes Film Festival hadn't already prompted enough drama, the first screening of the Netflix release "Okja" was marred by a technical glitch that led the festival to apologize
6:28AM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Entertainment
DJ Khaled gives Berkeley grads a crash course in winning
A group of future number-crunchers had their commencement crashed by DJ Khaled
11:44PM ( 8 hours ago )
'Seattle's son' Chris Cornell mourned in city
Seattle awoke Thursday to the news of the death of Chris Cornell, one of its most famous musicians and one whose forceful, somber songs came to help cement the city's place in rock history
6:30PM ( 13 hours ago )
Harvard student submits rap album as his senior thesis
A senior at Harvard University is earning praise _ and an honors degree _ for his debut rap album
5:11PM ( 15 hours ago )
AP Online Recordings News
The Latest: Bill O'Reilly pays tribute to Ailes on podcast
Former Fox News Channel personality Bill O'Reilly is warmly remembering former Fox network founder Roger Ailes
8:47PM ( 11 hours ago )
Prince William pays tribute to late mother Diana's legacy
Prince William has paid tribute to his mother, the late Princess Diana, while presenting awards honoring her faith in the power of young people
2:29PM ( 18 hours ago )
Brooks, Reiner, Lear, Van Dyke discuss living well after 90
Carl Reiner, Mel Brooks, Dick Van Dyke and Norman Lear discuss living well in their 90s in the new HBO documentary "If You're Not in the Obit, Eat Breakfast," and at the film's premiere Wednesday in Beverly Hills, California
12:02PM ( 20 hours ago )
APOnline Celebrity News
Sweden drops case, but WikiLeaks' Assange not in the clear
Swedish prosecutors have dropped their investigation into a rape allegation against Julian Assange, almost seven years after it began and five years after the WikiLeaks founder sought refuge inside Ecuador's London embassy to avoid extradition
8:02AM ( 27 minutes ago )
Ivanka Trump to take part in presidential trip
Ivanka Trump will travel with the president to Saudi Arabia, Israel and Italy on his upcoming foreign trip
8:02AM ( 27 minutes ago )
Worldwide effort set to keep Trump happy on 1st trip abroad
As President Donald Trump heads off on his first foreign trip, a worldwide effort is under way to accommodate America's homebody president on his first trip abroad since taking office
7:56AM ( 33 minutes ago )
The Latest: Macron seeks more German support in Mali
The Latest: Macron seeks more German support for military efforts against extremists in Africa
7:55AM ( 34 minutes ago )
Stocks bounce back after Trump-related losses
Global stocks are meandering but mostly higher, following an overnight recovery on Wall Street, though investor optimism was tempered by U.S. political uncertainties and a crisis brewing in Brazil
7:52AM ( 37 minutes ago )