During Sunday night’s VMAs, Jared Leto delivered a speech about his dear friend, Chester Bennington, the late lead singer of Linkin’ Park. In addition, Leto spoke about Chris Cornell, the late lead singer of pioneering grunge act Sound Garden.
You can read Leto’s tribute below.
“In 1976, in Phoenix, Arizona, a child was born. He was precocious, full of life, and determined, and grew up to become the singer of one of the greatest rock bands in the history of music. His name was Chester Bennington, and the band is Linkin’ Park.”
“MTV asked me to come here today to say a few words about Chester and the late, great Chris Cornell — two artists that 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. And witnessing his life taught me important things — especially about working relentlessly, pursuing dreams, and being kind and caring while doing it. When I think about him, Chester, 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, my brother, Tomo, our band. I think about his wife and his six, six incredible children. I think about his family, I think about his band, who were really his brothers. And I remember his voice. At once ferocious and delicate. That voice will live forever.”
At the end of Leto’s speech, he encouraged those who were feeling hopeless to reach out for help. He wanted to let viewers know that they aren’t alone.
Leto then introduced a special video of Linkin’ Park performing during the 2010 VMAs.
This isn’t the first time that Leto talked about his dear friend, Chester. Back in July, he penned a tribute which you can read here.