Student Work – Chester Bennington

Chester Bennington by Veronica Debbie


Chester Bennington, Image from Wikipedia


Veronica Debbie

Chester Charles Bennington (March 20, 1976 – July 20, 2017) was the lead singer of the American rock band, Linkin Park. He committed suicide by hanging himself with a belt. There were no drugs present at the scene, although a half-empty bottle of alcohol was found. His suicide coincided with the 53rd birthday of his friend Chris Cornell, the Soundgarden’s singer, who also committed suicide in May by hanging.

Bennington was born in Phoenix, Arizona. His father, Lee Russell Bennington, was a police detective and his mother, Susan Elaine Johnson, was a nurse. He had an older half-brother, Brian Bennington, who appeared to have a good relationship with him, and two older half-sisters who prefer to stay away from the media. Bennington revealed in an interview that he was continuously bullied due to his small stature and was sexually abused by an older male friend. His parents divorced when he was eleven years old, and his father gained custody of him. He moved in with his mother when he was seventeen. The abuse and his parents’ divorce drove him to alcohol and drugs. Eventually he stopped his drug use, and to comfort himself, he drew pictures and wrote poetry and songs.

His life changed when when he auditioned and joined the band, Xero, in 1996. This band later on changed its name to Hybrid Theory, and then to Linkin Park. With hit songs such as “Numb,” “Faint,” and “In the End,” they have produced 7 albums, sold more than 70 million albums worldwide, and won two Grammy Awards. Their songs were featured as soundtracks for blockbusters like Transformers and Twilight. Bennington himself appeared in movies Crank: High Voltage, and Saw 3D: The Final Chapter.  Other than the Linkin Park, Bennington formed another group, Dead by Sunrise, and served as lead singer for the Stone Temple Pilots. The latter was his music inspiration when he was young. Bennington also had a great interest in tattoos, and did some promotion for the Club Tattoo, a tattoo parlor in Tempe, Arizona, which was owned by his high school friend, Sean Dowdell.

Jaime, Bennington’s son, was born on May 12, 1996 from his relationship with girlfriend Elka Brand. Bennington later adopted Isaiah, Brand’s other son, who was born on November 8, 1997. On October 31, 1996, he married his first wife, Samantha Marie Olit, and had one child together, Draven Sebastian, on April 19, 2002. They divorced in 2005. In 2006, he married a former Playboy model, Talinda Ann Bentley, and had three children, Tyler Lee Bennington, born on March 16, 2006, and twins Lilly and Lila, born in March 2011. After Bennington’s death, Olit wrote a Facebook message that her son, Draven, was not treated equally by Bentley and never wanted to go to the family house. Olit expressed gratitude towards Bennington, that he had provided her with a judgment so that Draven went to the family house only when Bennington was there.

Bennington purchased the Palos Verdes Estates, Los Angeles, $2.5million, 3,956-square-foot, five bedrooms and two bathrooms house at the end of May 2017, about two months prior to his suicide. This raised speculation of some parties that Bennington was preparing for his family’s well being after his death. However, there is no information if he prepared a will.

Bennington had an estimated net worth of $20 to $30 million. He was laid to rest in a private burial near his home on July 29, 2017.



Stephanie Dube Dwilson, Chester Bennington’s Family: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know (July 20, 2017, 7:10 P.M.),


Chester Bennington’s Ex-Wife Blasts Family Members ‘Capitalizing on His Death’ (August 24, 2017),


Chester Bennington (September 6, 2017, 00:02 A.M.),


Emily Crane and Ann Schmidt, Linkin Park Frontman Chester Bennington Bought $2.5 Million Home for His Family just Two Months before He Was Found Dead in a Bedroom (July 25, 2017, 07:03 A.M.),

Effie Orfanides, Chester Bennington’s Net Worth 2017 (July 20, 2017, 4:01 P.M.),

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