Yesterday was brutal, and not in a good way. Excitement over the release of Alien: Covenant was tempered by the shocking news that Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell had died after a show in Detroit Wednesday night; the lauded singer was 52-years-old. Initial reports hinted this was a case of suicide by hanging, but a new statement released by Cornell’s wife and attorney are adding new layers of tragedy and mystery to the investigation, hypothesizing that the singer had a bad reaction to anxiety medication.
In a statement through their attorney, Chris Cornell’s family does not believe the Soundgarden and Audioslave singer knew “what he was doing” when he took his own life earlier this week in Detroit.
“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,” family attorney Kirk Pasich stated early Friday morning in a press release.
Cornell’s wife Vicky added in the new statement that Chris spoke with her before his Detroit show on Wednesday night and “discussed plans for a vacation over Memorial Day and other things we wanted to do.”
She said that later, after the show, he was “slurring his words; he was different,” when she spoke to him. She said she wants to wait on the results of toxicology tests before drawing any conclusions.
Whatever the ultimate determination as to cause of death turns out to be, Cornell’s loss is still being felt deeply by those who grew up listening to his music.