During a recent appearance on Audio Ink Radio, Sean Dowdell, Chester Bennington‘s longtime friend and former bandmate in Chester‘s early band GREY DAZE, looked back on LINKIN PARK singer taking his own life in 2017.
“Over the years, he did struggle in several different areas,” Sean said. “But in the weeks and months leading up to his life-ending choice, I guess, is the best way I can put that, I did not sense anything. I talked to him two nights before he passed. He was on top of the world. He was excited about starting rehearsals. He was excited about a lot of things. We were working on a new business location together. I didn’t sense anything.
He continued: “Now, eight or nine months before that, my wife sensed something in him and said, ‘Chester‘s not right. Something’s off.’ And I said, ‘No, no, no. He’s just trying to go for a new look or whatever.’ And she said, ‘No. I can see something in his eyes.’ And she literally said that to me. And I just blew it off, like, ‘No. I don’t think so.’
“And then, of course, what happened, happened,” Sean added. “And it’s easy to look back and go, ‘Oh, yeah. She saw it.’ But you never truly know what’s happening in someone’s mind. Had Chester been thinking rationally, I don’t think he would have done what he did at all. I just think that that’s what depression does – it removes the rational thought process from the moment that you take that choice.
“And sometimes there’s somebody there to help talk you out of it or to guide you in a different way or to distract you away from it, but the way this happened, it didn’t. There was nobody else there. And when that hit him at that specific moment, there was nobody else for him to lean on at the time, and that’s the most unfortunate thing, I think.”
Bennington took his own life on July 20, 2017. He was 41.