Chester Bennington was laid to rest in a private funeral this past Saturday (29th). TMZ reports, the Linkin Park frontman’s family and closest friends gathered near his home in Palos Verdes, CA. There were a couple hundred people who attended the service at the South Coast Botanic Garden including several musicians who once played or toured with the late singer. A full stage was set up for artists to perform a musical tribute.
Former Of Mice & Men frontman Austin Carlile was one of the attendees who shared the following photo:
Additional comments and tributes has surfaced including Bennington’s ex-wife Samantha Bennington who publicly shared the following letter:
“Words can not express the devastating loss that my son & I both, along with the rest of our families are feeling over my ex husband & son’s father’s recent passing. Unreal to stay the least!
I pray from my soul that he is at peace and no longer suffering.
My son & I are extremely spiritual & would like to share our believes with you in hopes it brings a little comfort.
We do not believe there is a hell. We believe that we as souls make “soul contracts” we agree to come into this world with the knowledge of our destiny & when it’s fulfilled we move on to a higher vibration of energy, meaning “the next level”. He fulfilled his destiny while helping others every step of the way through his music, a hand shake,a conversation, or even a hug. No matter if you saw him on stage, had an opportunity to meet him anywhere he truly touched everyone in a positive way. He absolutely loved singing for each & every one of you & for all of his friends & family at home all the time. I have always missed him singing throughout our home & loved it when he would visit, he would sing for us every time we ask or just spontaneously . He absolutely had a God given talent!
We are all created the same & connected so Chester you are never “gone”. Our souls & energy are forever connected.
Chester, as one of my best friends of the age of 19, a husband, father to my son, business partner, and all we created together, I’m truly honored to have completed our soul contracts together, build all we did together, & thank you for giving me the greatest gift ever, our beautiful son Draven.
I promise to continue to raise a great man who has integrity, humility, kindness, & most of all compassion & love.
I do feel your presence as a guardian angel watching over us & Im extremely filled with gratitude.
Thank you to Draven’s god parents Uncle Stefie & Moni along with friends & family for joining us in with a raw ruby crystal that we shared a prayer, we all kissed the stone, & prayed to chester to find peace & fill his heart with love. Then our son through it in the ocean as an offering to God/Source.
We also want to thank our family and friend who traveled close & far for their support & continuous love.
We will always love you Chester.
From the bottom of our hearts .. love Sam & Draven Bennington”
Linkin Park bassist Dave Farrell revealed his thoughts via Twitter on the loss of his bandmate:
“It goes without saying, this last week has been extremely difficult. The outpouring of love and kindness I’ve received from friends and Fans from all over the world has been incredible. I wish I could personally thank every one of you for your love and support. A huge part of Chester’s legacy will be the memories we hold of him in our hearts. He was an enthusiastic, playful father. An honest, and passionate musician, and a loyal friend. I’ve been touched to see memorials that have been held worldwide. If you have pictures from any memorials or events you’ve attended in memory of Chester, please send your favorites, I’d love to repost them.”
Lastly, Metallica’s Lars Ulrich spoke to 95.5 KLOS radio station before their gig at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California. Metallica and Linkin Park toured together as part of 2003’s Summer Sanitarium tour with Limp Bizkit, Deftones, and MudVayne during the time when St. Anger was released.
Ulrich expressed (transcribed by Blabbermouth):
“Chester was a very kind and very unassuming and very gentle soul, who had a really big heart. The first time I heard Linkin Park, just singing those songs on this first album — when was it? ’99 or 2000? — the power that came out of him was just unbelievable.
It was so original and so unique. He was one of those singers that has that rare gift where every word that comes out of him sounds authentic. He’s not just writing something down that he sings… Everything that comes out of him sounds like he feels and he means every word, every nuance, every syllable.”
The drummer added:
“We did a tour with ’em in 2003 where they were kind enough to come and play with us across America on a ‘Summer Sanitarium’ tour and we had a lot of fun. And all those guys are great guys and my heart goes out to all of ’em and to the family.”
I think more than anything, I think it reaffirms — without sounding too cheesy — that we’ve gotta live each moment to the max and just be in the moment. Every time we go out on stage, we try to take it all in. You never know when something can go sideways or something [can] happen to you physically or something. So life is beautiful and we’ve gotta just harness and maximize each moment to its fullest.”
During Metallica’s California show, frontman James Hetfield paid tribute to Bennington during the end of the song, “The Unforgiven,” stating, “We forgive you, Chester.”