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Don Cornelius

Commits Suicide

2/1/2012 6:00 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Don Cornelius Dead of Suicide at 75
Don Cornelius
-- who famously created "Soul Train" was found dead in his Sherman Oaks, CA home this morning ... and 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.

"Soul Train" changed the landscape of television when it debuted in 1971 and ran until 2006.

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Officials have notified Don's family.

Cornelius was 75.

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.

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8:10 AM PST --
Shawn Holley -- Don's lawyer and good friend -- tells TMZ, "This is devastating news. Don was a kind, funny and brilliant man. Even though his many health battles had left him frail, he remained vibrant, courtly and always sharp as a tack."

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296 COMMENTS

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| 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | Most Recent | Next 15 Comments
1.

Arcadia Rink    

In my heart I DON'T want to believe this. Don Cornelius is a cultural ICON in every aspect of the word. I am heart broken and very sad.

806 days ago
2.

Mary Ann McQueen    

RIP - Wishing him love, peace & everlasting soul...

806 days ago
3.

Delaware D    

Thats horrible!! RIP, brother.

806 days ago
4.

Michael Jackson Was A Pedo    

Jack warned him..

806 days ago
5.

Freddy    

This guy was truly an icon. RIP Don.

806 days ago
6.

steph    

RIP....Suicide is such a sad disease.

806 days ago
7.

Sonya in Tx    

I wouldn't be suprised if he was recently diagnosed with something incurable and decided to end it on his timeframe.

TMZ, stay on top of this story, please.....

806 days ago
8.

LoudMouth    

Absolutely loved that rich deep voice. RIP.

806 days ago
9.

AMommy2TwoBoys    

How sad. RIP Don.

806 days ago
10.

PopTart    

Wow! Not the news I wanted to wake up to :-(
R.I.P.

806 days ago
11.

Jay W.     

Very... very sad. RIP Don.

806 days ago
12.

campy    

***** made an unscheduled Soul Train stop, forever ahahaha

806 days ago
13.

NightOwl    

So, so sad. Like many others said he really is a cultural icon, he did so much to introduce new musicians and to show that no matter what race or socio-economic status you are we all have music in common. He did more for the world than he realized.

806 days ago
14.

THIN LIZZY    

RIP Don. LOVE PEACE AND SOUL.

806 days ago
15.

Dean    

What about Leslie Carter Nick and Aaron Carters sister ?????
She die at the age of 25 today and the publicist didn't want to tell the cause of her death although she had a 9 years old daughter

806 days ago
| 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | Most Recent | Next 15 Comments

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