The widow of rock star Chris Cornell insisted yesterday that he did not intentionally kill himself, saying the recovering addict’s judgment may have been affected by prescription drugs.
Authorities said Cornell was found hanging in his hotel room in Detroit shortly after he finished a show on Wednesday with his main band Soundgarden.
Wayne Country’s medical examiner ruled the grunge rock icon’s death a suicide.
But his widow, Vicky Cornell, said the 52-year-old musician gave no indication that he wanted to die.
Vicky stated that her late husband –who struggled with depression and substance abuse most of his life but sobered up a decade ago –had been taking Ativan, a prescription drug used to treat anxiety.
“Chris’ death is a loss that escapes words and has created an emptiness in my heart that will never be filled,” Vicky said in a statement.
She added that what happened is inexplicable, and voiced her hope that further medical reports will provide additional details.
Vicky added that Cornell loved their children, and he would not hurt them by taking his life.
The rocker’s second wife, with whom he had two children, said that he had flown back from his tour for Mothers Day on Sunday, and had returned only hours the show to maximize family time.
“When we spoke before the show, we discussed plans for a vacation over Memorial Day and other things we wanted to do,” she said.
Vicky revealed that when she spoke to the musician after the show, she noticed that he was slurring his words. She contacted security and asked them to check on him after he admitted to having taken an “extra Ativan or two.”
Cornell posted on Twitter pictures of flowers for Mothers Day and hailed Vicky, a music publicist he met in Paris, as “an angel and lioness.”
Kirk Pasich, a lawyer for the family, said that Ativan could lead to paranoia and suicidal thoughts.
“The family believes that if Chris took his life, he did not know what he was doing…” Pasich said.