We had no idea we’d need tissues while watching the 2017 MTV Video Music Awards. If we did, we would have been better prepared for Jared Leto’s emotional tribute to his late friends, Chester Bennington and Chris Cornell.
Just months after both Chester Bennington and Chris Cornell‘s tragic suicides, their dear friend, Jared Leto, took to the stage at the 2017 MTV Video Music Awards on Aug. 27, and eulogized both the Linkin Park and Soundgarden band members. Trust us when we say, there wasn’t a dry eye in the house, so be prepared before you watch the video below. “In 1976, in Phoenix, Arizona, a child was born,” Jared began. “He was precocious, full of life, and determined. He grew up to become the singer of one of the biggest rock bands in the history of music. His name was Chester Bennington.”
Jared then continued, “MTV asked me to come here to say a few words about Chester and the late, great, Chris Cornell, two artists I had the absolute pleasure of touring with. They were close friends with one another. Chester even singing the cover of the classic ‘Hallelujah’ at Chris’ funeral. Chester said of Chris, ‘Your voice was joy and pain and anger and forgiveness, love and heartache, all wrapped up into one.’ Just weeks later, Chester himself was gone. Chester was my friend. As he was to so many. Witnessing his life taught me important things. Especially about working relentlessly, pursuing dreams, and being kind and caring while doing it. When I talk about him, I see his face, which was always smiling. I think about his heart, which he wore on his sleeve. I think how kindly he treated me…and I remember his voice. At once ferocious and delicate, that voice will live forever.”
Finally, Jared took a moment to reach out to anyone who may be suffering from suicidal thoughts. “If there is anyone out there who is watching this tonight, who feels like there is no hope, hear me now,” Jared said. “You are not alone. There is always a way forward. Reach out, share your thoughts, do not give up, and, I promise you this: The absolute biggest breakthroughs in life lay just beyond the darkest days.”
Then, Linkin Park’s 2010 performance from the MTV Video Music Awards played on the big screen.
As we previously told you, Chris Cornell was found dead at the MGM Grand Detroit on May 17, 2017, after giving his last performance at the Fox Theater. Then, just two months later, Chester’s body was found unresponsive in a private home in the upscale Palos Verdes neighborhood of Los Angeles. They both committed suicide.
— iHeartRadio (@iHeartRadio) August 28, 2017
Our thoughts and prayers continue to go out to Chester Bennington’s family and friends during this difficult time.