As we all know, we lost another creative soul on July 20. Chester Bennington was found dead as a result of suicide. According to People music, the recently released autopsy report indicated that the Linkin Park lead singer was not under the influence of drugs and only had trace amounts of alcohol in his system. A report by Rolling Stone also cites "there was a history of suicidal ideation" from the coroner's notes.

The hidden tragedy

What the autopsy tells us without being written, is that Chester probably knew what he was doing at the time he took his life.

Unfortunately, it is extremely difficult to accept that possibility. This conscious or subconscious inability to acknowledge this scenario is an emotional protection many of us need. I personally live with this hidden tragedy every day. Four years ago, my only son, Brandon, at the age of 27 committed suicide, by hanging himself with his belt. After the initial shock and then denial, I prayed for weeks and weeks that the autopsy would show high levels of alcohol and drugs in Brandon’s system. If they both were present that would in some way assure me that Brandon was not in his “right state of mind” and felt no pain. Heartbroken as I was over his untimely passing, reading the words “trace amounts” and “not under the influence” at the time of death brought me to a completely different level of sadness.

Knowing that both, Chester and my son, more than likely chose to leave this world and us is tragic beyond comprehension.

Finding peace amongst the demons

Listening to Linkin Park music prior to writing this article, one of their hits “One More Light” plays over and over in my mind. The lyrics “can I help you, not to hurt, anymore?

We saw brilliance, when the world, was asleep. There are things that we can have, but can’t keep” hits me square in the gut. All I can think is, yes, I care when one more light goes out. As human beings, we all should care.

Trying to move forward, how do family and friends come to an understanding of the pain and demons that destroy such beautiful people?

Sadly, I do not have the answers and cannot say that I ever will. I have been told repeatedly over these last four years that time will heal. I’m not so sure I want to heal. I fear that once the pain stops, lives like that of Chester and Brandon are truly no longer. Although I did not personally know Chester Bennington or his family, my heart and every ounce of compassion I have are theirs. Thankfully, the demons that haunted Chester and Brandon are now gone, may we all find peace.