Jared Leto paid tribute to Chester Bennington at the MTV Video Music Awards last night (August 27).
The Linkin Park frontman died on July 20, aged 41. His funeral took place on July 29.
Leto’s band Thirty Seconds To Mars toured with Linkin Park in 2014, with Leto describing Bennington as a close friend. He praised Bennington’s “kind and caring” nature and inspiring work ethic during the speech.
“Witnessing his life taught me important things, especially about working relentlessly, pursuing dreams and being kind and caring while doing it,” Leto said.
“When I think about him, Chester, I see his face, which was always smiling, and I think about his heart, which he wore on his sleeve, and I think how kindly he treated me… I think about his wife and his six incredible children.
“I think about his family, I think about his band, who were really his brothers, and I remember his voice – at once ferocious and delicate – that voice will live forever.”
Leto then asked the VMAs audience to stand up in tribute to Bennington and urged viewers who may be feeling alone to seek help.
“If there is anyone out there who is watching this tonight who feels like there is no hope, hear me now: you are not alone. There is always a way forward . . . do not give up. I promise you this, the absolute biggest breakthroughs in life lie just beyond the darkest days.”
Linkin Park bassist Dave Phoenix Farrell praised Leto for the tribute, writing on Twitter: “Thanks @JaredLeto for your beautiful words about @ChesterBe… your heart really shines through hearing you speak about Chester.”
Watch the full speech below.
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