Chris Cornell’s Wife Opens Up About Singer’s Death and Their Last Moments Together
While fans of Chris Cornell knew him for his music, his wife, Vicky, will remember the late 52-year-old singer as a “devoted husband and father.”
“Chris’s death is a loss that escapes words and has created an emptiness in my heart that will never be filled,” Vicky, who married Cornell in 2004, said in a statement to ET. “He was my best friend. His world revolved around his family first and of course, his music, second.”
Vicky also recalled the days leading up to Cornell’s death, where he made it a point to spend time with her and his children. “He flew home for Mother’s Day to spend time with our family. He flew out mid-day Wednesday, the day of the show, after spending time with the children,” she noted. “When we spoke before the show, we discussed plans for a vacation over Memorial Day and other things we wanted to do.”
His wife of around 13 years said that after the show, she “noticed he was slurring his words; he was different.”
“When he told me he may have taken an extra Ativan or two, I contacted security and asked that they check on him,” she further stated, referencing an anxiety medication that both she and the family’s lawyer, Kirk Pasich, say Cornell was taking at the time of his death. “What happened is inexplicable and I am hopeful that further medical reports will provide additional details.”
On Thursday, a spokesperson for the Wayne County Medical Examiner’s Office told ET that Cornell’s autopsy had been completed and the cause of death was ruled suicide by hanging — but Vicky isn’t convinced that his death was intentional.
“I know that he loved our children and he would not hurt them by intentionally taking his own life,” she said in her statement.
Pasich also released a statement in regard to the Soundgarden and Audioslave frontman’s death being called a suicide, claiming that the medication he was allegedly taking could have affected his judgment. “Without the results of toxicology tests, we do not know what was going on with Chris — or if any substances contributed to his demise. Chris, a recovering addict, had a prescription for Ativan and may have taken more Ativan than recommended dosages,” Pasich said in his statement to ET. “The family believes that if Chris took his life, he did not know what he was doing, and that drugs or other substances may have affected his actions.”
Vicky concluded her statement with a message of gratitude. “The outpouring of love and support from his fans, friends and family means so much more to us than anyone can know,” she said. “Thank you for that, and for understanding how difficult this is for us.”
Cornell’s rep, Brian Bumbery, confirmed to ET on Thursday that Cornell — a father of three — had died, adding that his family was shocked by the news.
A source close to the singer and his wife also told ET: “Chris was a great father. His children must be crushed.”
If you or someone you know needs help, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).