Chester Bennington's friends have told Rolling Stone magazine that the LINKIN PARK singer, had always been open about his struggles with addiction and depression, had a three-day relapse last August, during which he blacked out from alcohol, and had been drinking as recently as October.
Chester's longtime friend Ryan Shuck, who played guitar in Bennington's side project DEAD BY SUNRISE, said that he believes Bennington "had a couple of drinks" just before he died of suicide by hanging on July 20. "We don't know how much, but it doesn't take much when you're that advanced an alcoholic and an addict and you're battling to the extent he described to me. You don't need much to lose your mind for a minute."
Bennington, who told Shuck that he was six months sober a month before his death, had been texting with Robert DeLeo, his onetime bandmate in STONE TEMPLE PILOTS, in the days prior to his suicide. Robert described Chester's messages to Rolling Stone as "loving, positive, looking-forward-to-the-future, growing-old kinds of things." And just a day before he died, Bennington e-mailed former GUNS N' ROSES drummer Matt Sorum, saying he'd like to perform again with their all-star covers band KINGS OF CHAOS.
Bennington struggled with drugs and alcohol for years and went to rehab twice around 2006.
Investigators reportedly found no illegal drugs or prescription drugs while searching the LINKIN PARK frontman's home following his passing. It was previously reported that there was a partially consumed bottle of alcohol in the bedroom where the 41-year-old singer was found hanging.
It is not presently clear if Bennington had any drugs in his system at the time of his death. Toxicology results are pending.
The singer had said in the past he had considered committing suicide because he had been abused as a child by an older male.
"When I was young, getting beaten up and pretty much raped was no fun," Chester told The Guardian in 2011. "No one wants that to happen to you and honestly, I don't remember when it started."
He recalled that seeing a photo of himself as a child at his mother's house from around the time of the abuse brought it all back.
"I remember that stuff happening to me at that stage and even thinking about it now makes me want to cry," he said. "My God, no wonder I became a drug addict. No wonder I just went completely insane for a little while."
After Chris Cornell died in May, Bennington wrote a heartfelt message paying tribute to the SOUNDGARDEN frontman. In the message, Bennington wrote he couldn't imagine the world without his late friend in it.
Bennington's body was found on what would have been Cornell's 53rd birthday.