Chester Bennington’s Bandmate & Widow Read Final Texts: ‘He Was In A Life Or Death Battle’


Late Linkin Park singer Chester Bennington was honored by his Dead By Sunrise bandmate Ryan Shuck at a recent tribute event. Shuck discussed his final conversations with Bennington, and reading the final texts with Chester’s widow Talinda.

“A mentally and emotionally healthy Chester would have never meant to hurt any of us, I can promise you that. Never. He was not himself when this happened, and he was not in control. We often spoke at length about the power of our darkness, in an effort to repel it and understand it, not invite it in and let it have its way with us.

There’s no easy way to say this, but this was not an act of selfishness, he didn’t mean to hurt us, it was an act of illness. Upon re-reading some of my last texts with Chester, Talinda and I sat there and read them all together. I realized that while he was lovingly encouraging me with my own battle with addiction, and the dark passenger as we called it, he was also clearly describing his own hour by hour battle with the demons that were so closely hounding him. Despite all the rainbow and grateful emojis we were sending to one other, I seemed to have missed the subtext. He told me that he had 6 months sobriety under his belt, and I foolishly thought well he’s got this thing beat, fucking awesome. The truth of the matter was that the dark passenger already had its hand on the wheel, and Chester was in a life or death battle to stay in control.

Chester, I deeply understand the pain that you are in. I don’t blame you, and I’m not angry with you. I’m so sorry I couldn’t do more. Chester would be horrified if we let this destroy any of us, he would be horrified, so we’re not going to do it. We’re going to keep going on, we’re going to choose to live, even though I can’t imagine a life without him, there’s going to be one, and we’re going to keep going.”

Talinda Bennington has continued to raise awareness for mental health issues on social media with her new #FuckDepression hashtag.

Hybrid Meck wrote to her, “C was the only reason I was alive. Now that he’s gone the LP community is the reason I am alive today ♥ #MakeChesterProud #fuckdepression.”

She responded, “Always here for you.”

A fan wrote, “you have been taking care of all us and we’re grateful, but WHAT ABOUT YOU? how are you? what can we do to make you feel better??”

She responded, “Watching this #fuckdepression community grow&how you are loving & supporting each other, that heals me too.And we are just getting started!”

Eves wrote, “My friend @GihSoldierLP is having a bad time,She’s hospitalized,she also has depression,could u tell her that we all are with her.”

She responded, “We are all with you @GihSoliderLP. Let’s help her feel the love we have for her! #fuckdepression #MakeChesterProud.”

Sylvia wrote, “I feel the same as Aleksandra. Every day I think of taking my own life. I am not strong enough to hold on after all the shit I’ve been thru.”

She responded, “You’re not alone. Your LP family is here. Let’s let Sylvia know that she does matter. #fuckdepression #MakeChesterProud.”