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TAYLOR HAWKINS's cause of death drug related, according to Columbian police

28-03-2022

Colombian police believe the death of FOO FIGHTERS drummer Taylor Hawkins was drug related.

The 50-year-old musician was found dead in a hotel room at the Casa Medina in Bogota on Friday (March 25).

Last weekend (Saturday, March 26), the Office Of The Attorney General Of Colombia released a statement indicating that a urine toxicological test performed by officials on Taylor Hawkins’s body preliminarily found 10 types of substances, including THC (marijuana), antidepressants, benzodiazepine and opioids.

In an official statement, the office said: “Colombia’s National State Prosecution Service can confirm the following after the initial autopsy on the body of Taylor Hawkins:

“1) That in the toxicology test on Taylor Hawkins’s urine 10 types of substances were preliminarily found, including marijuana, tricyclic antidepressants, benzodiazepines, and opioids.

“2) The National Institute of Forensic Medicine is continuing its medical studies to be able to completely clarify the facts that led to Taylor Hawkins’s death.

“3) Colombia’s National State Prosecution Service will continue with its investigation and reveal the results obtained as part of this investigation as appropriate.”

A short time after Hawkins’s death, the Metropolitan Police Of Bogota released a statement published by several news outlets in Colombia, including Bogota’s El Tiempo, in which they said: “According to those close to him, the death could be related to the consumption of narcotic substances.” But they cautioned: “The cause of death has yet to be established.”

In a statement, the Bogota municipal government said the city’s emergency center received a report of a patient with “chest pain” and sent an ambulance on Friday evening. Paramedics attempted to revive him but there was no response and Hawkins was declared dead at the hotel in northern Bogota, the statement added.

Luis Carlos Velez, the director of local radio station La FM, said that a police officer who entered Hawkins’s hotel room had told prosecutors he saw a “cocaine-like” white powder. Colombian authorities also “found an empty beer can, an opened bottle of vodka, a Coca-Cola bottle and some other articles which are being analyzed,” he said. But he added that “drug use has not been confirmed yet.”

Fans, journalists and videographers began to gather outside Casa Medina after Hawkins’s death was announced. Ambulances and police cars, including those of judicial police and forensic investigators, could be seen stationed outside of the hotel, which is located in the middle of the financial and commercial centers of Bogota in one of the most historic and traditional buildings of the city. A couple of hours later, Hawkins’s body was finally brought out of the hotel, placed into a coroner’s van and driven away.

Colombian music and entertainment journalist Alejandro Marin tweeted as news of the drummer’s death emerged: “Don’t begin to blame the country because Taylor died in Colombia if he died of an overdose. Don’t be so stupid.”

Bogota mayor Claudia López Hernández commented on Hawkins’s death, writing in a Twitter message: “The world of music and Bogotá are in mourning for the death of the great Taylor Hawkins. To his family and friends, to the FOO FIGHTERS and to all his fans, our hugs and condolences.”

The Bogotá District Health Secretariat said in a statement: “The District Department of Health mourns the death of this talented musician and drummer, widely recognized internationally for his work. In addition, the entity sends its message of condolences to the family, colleagues and followers.”

The FOO FIGHTERS were scheduled to perform Friday at the Picnic Stereo festival in Bogota but their performance was canceled.

The band played Lollapalooza Chile on March 18 and Lollapalooza Argentina on March 20. They are scheduled to headline Lollapalooza Brasil on Sunday (March 27).

Hawkins spent two weeks in a coma in 2001 after overdosing in London. He later told Kerrang! magazine: “Everyone has their own path and I took it too far. I was partying in London one night, and I mistakenly did something and it changed everything. I believed the bullshit myth of live hard and fast, die young.

“I’m not here to preach about not doing drugs, because I loved doing drugs, but I just got out of control for a while and it almost got me. I was heading down a road that was going to lead to even worse paths.

“Whether someone’s sober, or they like a glass of wine with dinner, or they want a bottle of Jägermeister before they go onstage, or they like to smoke doobies all day long, everyone has their own path, and I took it too far,” he added. I’m glad it got knocked on the head at that point. I wouldn’t take anything away that I’ve done or been through either, because it’s all part of the trip and the journey. I’m trying to be as candid as I can be. I go mountain biking now.”

He said in 2018: “I was partying a lot. I wasn’t a junkie per se, but I was partying. There was a year where the partying just got a little too heavy.

“Thank God on some level this guy gave me the wrong line with the wrong thing one night and I woke up going, ‘What the fuck happened?’ That was a real changing point for me.”

In a separate interview with Beats 1, he said: “There’s no happy ending with hard drugs,” but declined to elaborate on his sobriety. “I don’t really discuss how I live my life in that regard,” he said. “I have my system that works for me.”

Born in Fort Worth, Texas, Hawkins joined FOO FIGHTERS in 1997. Prior to that, he played with the Orange County band SYLVIA and was also in the backing band for Sass Jordan. He also toured with Alanis Morissette as her drummer.

Hawkins was inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame last year as a member of the FOO FIGHTERS.

Hawkins’s most recent work with FOO FIGHTERS included last year’s “Medicine At Midnight” album, a collection of BEE GEES covers and FOO FIGHTERS‘ horror film “Studio 666”.

Hawkins’s solo project TAYLOR HAWKINS AND THE COATTAIL RIDERS released its first album in 2006, and a follow-up effort, “Get The Money”, in 2019. Other side projects included THE BIRDS OF SATAN and the classic rock cover band CHEVY METAL. More recently, he formed the supergroup NHC with JANE’S ADDICTION members Dave Navarro and Chris Chaney.

Hawkins is survived by his wife Alison, whom he married in 2005, and their three children: Oliver ShaneAnnabelle and Everleigh.

Source: Blabbermouth

In the meantime, countless of artists, among which Slash, Joan Jett, Mark Tremonti, Aaron Lewis (Staind) and  Wolfgang van Halen (Mammth WVH) paid their respect to the deceased drummer, who also played on Alanis Morisette’s hit album ‘Jagged Little Pill’. Also less obvious tributes were made, by singer Elton John and America’s first lady, Jill Biden. 

Photo credit: Danny Clinch

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