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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

No Avatar
196.

Cecil Shaw    

CECIL SHAW
To all my Soul Train Alumni I was one of the blessed and fortunate artist to perform on Soul Train in 1974. February 1, 2012 Don Cornelius passed, it saddens me very deeply. To all his family, friends and love ones my heart felt condolences.

894 days ago
197.

Cecil Shaw    

CECIL SHAW
To all my Soul Train Alumni I was one of the blessed and fortunate artist to perform on Soul Train in 1974. February 1, 2012 Don Cornelius passed, it saddens me very deeply. To all his family, friends and love ones my heart felt condolences.

894 days ago
198.

Simone    

Good riddance. The world is now a better place without this RACIST on it.

.

And no suprise with the SHC connection.

894 days ago
199.

Cyn    

So sad! I grew up dancing along with those on Soul Train! RIP, Mr. Cornelius!

894 days ago
200.

GUERILLAONE.COM    

tragic. what kind o=of message does this send to our youth. we all have choices no matter how bad things get. we need mor support in this world.

894 days ago
201.

Dave Wollenberg    

I started watchin' 'Soul Train', 'bout the time I started listenin' to soul music, in the early '80s. I'm a white man, and, I'm very sorry to hear that Don would do this to himself! My prayers go out to the Cornelius family, and, the entire black community. RIP, brother Don. As always, I wish you love, peace, and SOULLL!

894 days ago
202.

MaLi    

So many childhood memories waiting&watching SoulTrain...Rest in Paradise Don Cornelius!

894 days ago
203.

musicollector    

I VERY fondly remember those glorious days when "Soul Train" exposed us to some of the greatest songs of all time, songs with a wicked dance beat. I was enchanted by this fabulous show. It breaks my heart to think Don did this to himself. I wish it were not true. We will never forget your labor of love of bringing Soul music to the masses, Don. RIP, brother.

894 days ago
204.

Charles Peeples     

Who,s Going To Drive The Train Now Don RIP:c.p Lancaster,SC

894 days ago
205.

Antoinette Petty    

I feel like one of the Kings of the black community has just gone on to the land of plenty. You will be greatly missed. Love, peace and soul..... Rest in peace D.

894 days ago
206.

Malcolm Hanger    

Just sorry to hear about Don. He was an ICON in the industry. He will be missed. Our thoughts/Prayers go out to all of his family. MKH-Murrell's Inlet,SC

894 days ago
207.

brian george    

he truely will be missed

894 days ago
208.

Sandra    

My family love to see him on SOUL TRAIN may he rest in peace.WE Love You DON Cornnelius.

894 days ago
209.

Joel Stokes    

It's a very sad thing to happen, we must all realize that people get sick and some times loose thier minds being sick. I pray for his family. This is yet another lesson to be learned.

894 days ago
210.

robert    

when satan "Blesses" yah...( in sarah palin's ANNOYING voice )...what cha expect !!.... Mary Mary yours comin AND K Franklin !!!sellouts

894 days ago
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