In a statement announcing the news, Dead Kennedys revealed that the drummer died “from trauma to the head caused by an accidental fall” at his home in Los Angeles.
They wrote: “Dead Kennedys’ drummer D.H. Peligro passed away in his Los Angeles home yesterday, October 28th. Police on the scene stated that he died from trauma to the head caused by an accidental fall.
“Arrangements are pending and will be announced in the coming days. We ask that you respect the family’s privacy during this difficult time. Thank you for your thoughts and words of comfort.”
Born Darren Henley in St. Louis, Missouri in 1959, Peligro joined Dead Kennedys in 1981, replacing founding drummer Ted (real name Bruce Slesinger).
After the band broke up in 1986, Peligro briefly joined Red Hot Chili Peppers as replacement for Jack Irons, though was fired less than a year later due to drug and alcohol-related issues.
The drummer then took part in the Dead Kennedys reunion of 2001, and carried on drumming for them up until his death, bar a one-year break from 2008-2009. He also had a brief solo career.
Among those to pay tribute to Peligro was Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea, who tweeted: “DH Peligro forever and ever. The funnest, kindest and the rockingest. My dear brother I’m so grateful for our time I love you forever.”
In an extended Instagram post, Flea added: “My dear friend, my brother I miss you so much. I’m devastated today, a river of tears, but all my life I will treasure every second. The first time I saw you play with the DK’s in ‘81 you blew my mind. The power, the soul, the recklessness. You became my beloved friend, so many times of every kind.
“We had so much fun, so much joy, having each other’s backs. I love you with all my heart. You are the truest rocker, and a crucial part of rhcp history. D H P in the place to be, you live forever in our hearts, you wild man, you bringer of joy, you giant hearted man. I will always honor you. Rest In Peace and freedom from all that restrained you.”
DH Peligro forever and ever. The funnest, kindest and the rockingest. My dear brother I’m so grateful for our time I love you forever.
— Flea (@flea333) October 29, 2022