Coroners confirm presenter died of self-inflicted gunshot wound

Soul Train host Don Cornelius’s death has been officially ruled as a suicide, according to reports.

Rolling Stone says that coroners have confirmed that the television host had died after shooting himself in the head, aged 75. The post mortem verdict comes a week after Cornelius’s death was first reported (February 2), and corroborates the police’s claims that he had taken his own life.

Cornelius hosted Soul Train from 1971 to 2003 and has been heralded for giving national exposure to artists such as Aretha Franklin and Marvin Gaye. Shortly after his death was announced, Franklin paid tribute in a statement which read: “It’s so sad, stunning and downright shocking. A huge and momentous loss to the African-American community and the world at large.

“Don Cornelius single handedly brought about a melding and unity of bother and sisterhood among young adults worldwide and globally with the unforgettable creation of Soul Train.”

Other artists to pay their respects, meanwhile, included Snoop Dogg, Ice Cube and Smashing Pumpkins singer Billy Corgan.

Cornelius stepped down from his role as Soul Train host in 1993. He was honoured with a place in the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame in 1995, and also has a star on the Walk of Fame in Hollywood.