ABC’s Detroit affiliate WXYZ has obtained audio of the phone call placed by an hotel employee to the police after Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell was found dead inside a Detroit hotel room.
According to a police report, bodyguard Martin Kirsten kicked a hotel door open inside MGM Grand and found Cornell with a red exercise band around his neck. The rocker was already unresponsive, the report added.
“I have a non-responsive guest in the hotel, a 50-year-old male,” the employee can be heard saying in the recording.
“Non-responsive — he’s not breathing?” dispatch replied. “No,” the employee answered. “They found out that the guest is attempting to hang himself, so they’re trying to get him down so they can assist with CPR.”
Medics attempted to perform CPR on Cornell, but it was too late.
The coroner ruled Chris’s death a suicide by hanging. Although several prescription drugs were in his system at the time of his death, the medical examiner determined that they did not play a role in his demise.
Chris struggled with substance addiction since his teen years, but had been sober since 2003 and, according to his wife Vicky, had not relapsed since 2009.
The coroner’s report revealed that he had the sleep aid Ativan, a mild sedative called Butalbital found in migraine medication, a decongestant and caffeine in his system when he was found dead, along with an anti-opioid called Narcan that was administered by EMTs on the scene.
Vicky told People that Chris was prescribed Ativan last year as a sleep aid but recently still seemed deprived of rest. She added that he did not seem like himself when they spoke for the last time by phone shortly before his death, saying “He was on a rant. I said, ‘You need to tell me what you took,’ and he just got mean. That wasn’t my Chris.”
In addition to Vicky, Chris is survived by three children: 12-year-old Toni, 11-year-old Christopher and 17-year-old Lily, the latter from a previous marriage. He was cremated and laid to rest on May 26 in Los Angeles.