The legendary Don Cornelius of “Soul Train” fame was found dead in his southern California home this morning. Cornelius suffered a self-inflicted gun shot wound to the head–he was 75.
Here’s what TMZ is reporting:
……law enforcement sources tell us it appears he committed suicide.
We’re told cops discovered the body at around 4 AM PT. Law enforcement sources tell us … Cornelius died from a gunshot wound to the head and officials believe the wound was self-inflicted.
We’re told Cornelius was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.
During Don’s bitter divorce proceedings in 2009, he told an L.A. judge he was suffering from “significant health issues” and wanted to “finalize this divorce before I die.”
Cornelius was arrested in 2008 for beating up his wife. He pled no contest to misdemeanor domestic violence and was placed on 3 years probation. His probation just terminated.
The divorce was granted in 2010.
Sources close to Don tell us … the TV icon was plagued with health issues for years … including a stroke and a condition that required brain surgery.
Cornelius began “Soul Train” in 1971, the counterpart to blacks not being featured on “American Bandstand”. The show was a weekly stable in many of our homes until 2006; and became one of the most successful shows in history.
My siblings and I used to watch Soul Train every Saturday morning, and try to copy their dance moves. Even at family functions we would have our own “Soul Train line”……
This show made us feel good, and was truly one of the greatest music television programs ever.
Truly sad, RIP Don.