Thursday, December 09, 2004

Dimebag Darrell Dead

I never really listened to Pantera or Damageplan but I knew of Dimebag Darrell through Skid Row and thought he was pretty cool. This makes me sad. There's just too much violence and death and sadness in this world lately.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (Dec. 9) - A gunman charged onstage at a packed nightclub and opened fire on the band and crowd, killing top heavy metal guitarist "Dimebag" Darrell Abbott and three other people before a police officer shot him to death, authorities and witnesses said.

Police spokeswoman Sherry Mercurio identified three of the victims of Wednesday's shooting as Abbott, who played for the band Damageplan, and two other men, Nathan Bray and Erin Halk.

She identified the gunman as Nathan Gale, 25, of the Marysville area northwest of Columbus. She said there was no information on a motive or if he had any connection to the band.

Damageplan had just begun its first song at Alrosa Villa when the man shot Abbott five or six times at point-blank range, a witness said.

Abbott, 38, one of metal's top guitarists, and his brother, Damageplan drummer Vinnie Paul Abbott, were original members of Grammy-nominated thrash rock pioneers Pantera, a popular metal band in the 1990s.

The witness, 22-year-old Chris Couch, said he was standing about 30 feet from the stage when he saw a man wearing a hooded sweatshirt walk up to the stage, followed by a bouncer and another club employee.

The man in the sweatshirt climbed onto the stage, started yelling and opened fire on the guitarist, then shot a bouncer who pulled him off the musician, Couch said.

Police spokesman Sgt. Brent Mull said that after shooting at band members, the gunman fired into the crowd. Mull said the gunman was shot and killed by a police officer who arrived shortly after the shooting began.

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