Los Angeles police say “Soul Train” host Don Cornelius has died in California of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Police responded to a shooting found Cornelius at his Mulholland Drive home around 4 a.m. He was pronounced dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound about an hour later at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, according to the coroner’s office.
“God bless him for the solid good and wholesome foundation he provided for young adults worldwide and the unity and brotherhood he singlehandedly brought about with his most memorable creation of ‘Soul Train,’” said Aretha Franklin, an early performer on the show.
The Rev. Jesse Jackson told KNX-Los Angeles that Cornelius “was a transformer.”
“’Soul Train’ became the outlet for African-Americans,” Jackson said, adding that he talked to Cornelius a few days ago and there were no signs Cornelius was upset.
T.I. has touched many people with his lyrics and on Wednesday (October 13), the MC’s words may have saved a life. A young man who threatened to jump off an Atlanta building was coaxed out of committing suicide with the help of the superstar rapper.
According to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, a man ascended to the roof of a 22-story building on Peachtree Street just before 4 p.m., threatening to leap to his death. T.I. (born Clifford Harris) told NBC affiliate 11Alive News that he volunteered to help after hearing about the situation on the city’s V-103 radio station, which is housed in the Colony Square skyscraper, where the man was threatening to take his own life.
“He came to the scene and offered to talk to him, we told the young man that, and he came down,” Officer James Polite told The AJC. The MC reportedly spoke to the man for a few minutes before he was taken to Grady Memorial Hospital. Polite said the man would not face charges. Polite added that authorities appreciated the help.
“He didn’t have to stop. He could’ve kept on going about his business,” Polite said. “We’re happy it ended the way it did, and we thank him.”
The Good Samaritan move comes days before T.I. is scheduled to face his own legal troubles. The chart-topping MC is due in court on Friday after getting arrested in Los Angeles for drug possession. The lyricist is currently on probation after wrapping up a recent jail bid for weapons charges and the arrest is a possible violation of his probation terms.
T.I. reportedly expressed remorse to V-103 listeners for his recent slip-up and vowed to turn things around. (Tip also gave an update on his music — head to the RapFix blog for more.)