Fans of the popular rap metal group Linkin Park were in for a horrific surprise on July 19. The band’s lead singer, Chester Bennington, was found dead in his home from an apparent suicide. He was 41.
Linkin Park was formed in 1996 and quickly rose to fame after their debut album, “Hybrid Theory,” was released in 2000. Since then, the band has produced numerous chart topping singles and six more albums, including their latest entitled “One More Light,” which was released in May.
The band has been numerously praised as one of the greatest of the past decade and Bennington’s voice has been celebrated as one of the most unique set of pipes to ever grace the music industry. His talent will be hard to replace and fans everywhere have been shaken by the loss of this versatile icon. Sam Stokes, a student of Saint Leo University, was deeply impacted by Bennington’s demise.
“I felt dizzy and numb when I first heard about his death,” Stokes said.
For Stokes and many others, Bennington and Linkin Park were more than mere music makers.
“I’ve been a fan for over a decade,” said Stokes. “Their songs always have powerful meanings, which have personally helped me through my own troubling times.”
Crystal Swank, a Dade City resident, expressed similar feelings.
“It’s very sad that [Bennington] felt that he had to do that,” Swank said of his suicide. “He sang about a lot of things that people feel, things that we all think about. Like in the song ‘Numb.’ We think about being what everyone wants us to be, and we don’t want to, but still we worry about what society wants us to be.”
Remaining members of Linkin Park recently released a moving statement for their fallen comrade on the band’s official Facebook page. It can be found in its entirety on their Facebook. The reasons behind Bennington’s tragic death are yet to be known and the fate of Linkin Park remains uncertain.
“I hope the band continues on, since [Mike] Shinoda and the others are still living,” sad Stokes. “Their new songs can honor Chester and help deter others from suicide.”
On this matter, Swank felt differently.
“I don’t think there can be a band without [Bennington],” she said. “They can go on to do other things, but I don’t think they can be Linkin Park without him.”