A Chester Bennington tribute: Voice of a generation gone too soon

Photo courtesy of Rolling Stone

Chester Bennington, frontman for American rock band Linkin Park, was found dead from a successful suicide attempt July 20, and while his physical presence may be gone forever, his legacy remains within the hearts of so many fans. Though the world is forced to mourn the loss of Bennington, memories of his life-well-lived hinder still today.

Bennington is known for many things, but the five qualities listed below sum up why we, his fans, will continue to remember Bennington.

Family man

It’s not everyday you see a musician devote the majority of his/her time to family rather than music. However, Bennington did just that. While music played an important role in his life, Bennington was just as concerned, if not more, with growing and maintaining a family life.

The 41-year-old had six children: Lila, Tyler, Isaiah, Jaime, Lily and Draven and was married to his wife Talinda Ann Bentley for 12 years. His genuine love for his family deemed true until Bennington’s death as he prepared his family for a life without him with a new home just two months prior to his suicide.

Passion

If you’ve ever seen Bennington perform live, it’s without hesitation that this rockstar knew how to put on an unforgettable show for his fans. Without the immense amount of passion and emotion poured into his musical performances, he wouldn’t be known for the performer he is today. He literally put everything he had into not only his performances but his lyrics, too, which gained him much respect within the music industry.

Commitment

Whether it was through songwriting, performing or any other music related event, Bennington remained committed to his music career. So much so that Bennington’s distinctive vocal style, which made him stand out from most rockers, is known for more than the Linkin Park lead. In 2005, Bennington co-founded Dead by Sunrise, a side project to his work with Linkin Park. He even filled in for Scott Weiland as lead vocalist for Stone Temple Pilots temporarily. Why? Because he constantly felt the need to deliver music to his fans.

Honesty

Bennington was undeniably honest with his fans, even when he wasn’t asked to be. Not only was he open with his fans about his drug and alcohol addiction, but he would go beyond that and take the time to meet and talk with his fans as well. He wasn’t afraid to let people know the real him, and that’s a rare quality for many of today’s musicians.

Bennington welcomed his feelings, mostly his pain, onstage. This allowed him to create a true connection with fans going through many of life’s same issues, and when you establish that connection, it never really goes away. That connection with fans is what helped Bennington to deliver clear messages on how to overcome anxiety and depression.

Voice of a generation

Ultimately, Bennington was the voice of a generation: a generation of rejected teens who suffered from addiction, anxiety and depression. Everyone who ever listened to his music could relate to Bennington and felt like he understood him/her as individuals. Regardless of the title of the song, Bennington always provided fans with relatable material. He helped people cope with the bad days and make the good days better.

With the sudden loss of Bennington, a renowned voice is gone too soon. He will be missed by many within the incredible fanbase he built.

To contact Lifestyles Editor Tayhlor Stephenson, email lifestyles@mtsusidelines.com.

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