Soul Train Host Don Cornelius Dead

February 1, 2012 by staff 

Soul Train Host Don Cornelius Dead, Don Cornelius, the smooth voiced host of the television show Soul Train was found dead in his Sherman Oaks, CA home this morning, according to CNN.

Cornelius, 75, hosted the television show for more than 20 years.

CNN also reports that the Los Angeles County Coroner’s office confirmed Cornelius died from a gunshot wound to the head that was self-inflicted.

The police discovered Cornelius’ body around 4 a.m. PST, and was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead, TMZ said on their website.

Soul Train was instrumental in bringing African-American musical acts to a larger audience, such as Aretha Franklin. The show ran in syndication from 1974 to 2006. Cornelius was the host from the show’s inception until 1993.

Born Sept. 27, 1936, in Chicago, Cornelius worked an insurance salesman before heading to broadcasting school in 1966. He worked as a substitute DJ and was a sports anchor for A Black’s View of the News on WCIU in 1968.

Inspired by American Bandstand, Cornelius used $400 of his own money to create the pilot for Soul Train.

Cornelius told a judge during his 2009 divorce proceedings that he wanted to “finalize this divorce before I die” because he was suffering from significant health issues.

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