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Chris Cornell’s widow says he had drug relapse the year before his death


Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic | Getty Images

Late Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell‘s widow Vicky revealed in a Wednesday morning (February 21st) interview on Good Morning America that her husband fell back into addiction for the first time since 2003 the year before his death. Vicky explained, “Approximately a year before he died, he was prescribed a benzodiazepine to help him sleep. He had torn his shoulder . . . the pain in the shoulder was waking him up at night and it was keeping him up.”

Vicky said that the medication caused a change in her husband, remarking, “The brain of someone who has a substance use disorder is different from that of . . . someone who doesn’t. He relapsed. He had really delayed speech. He was forgetful.”

  • Chris himself admitted as much in an email to a friend that he sent last March in which he wrote in part, “Would love to talk, had relapse.”
  • Just two months later, the vocalist hanged himself in a Detroit hotel room after a concert with Soundgarden.
  • A report from the medical examiner found various prescription drugs in Chris’ system but said they did not contribute to his death, which was ruled a suicide.
  • Vicky Cornell, meanwhile, has joined the Advisory Board at the Addiction Policy Forum, a national nonprofit focused on improving policies related to substance use disorders through a comprehensive response.
  • She said, “While I can’t bring my husband back, I can help the millions of other families struggling with addiction and I hope we can prevent this horrific experience from happening to others.”


SIDE NOTES: Former Audioslave guitarist Tom Morello recently said on the “Wall Of Sound: Up Against The Wall” podcast that “there were no warning signs” with his one-time bandmate Chris Cornell, with whom Morello played at a brief Audioslave reunion in January 2017. Morello added, “It was such a surprise. The one thing that we just have to all be conscious of, whether it’s musicians or not, is just to look out for each other and check in to see how people are doing.”


READ: Both Blabbermouth and Alternative Nation have more on this story

CHECK IT OUT: Watch the full Good Morning America segment

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