Less than a week ago was the birthday of legendary deceased guitarist Darrell Lance Abbott, aka Dimebag Darrell, the infamous lead guitarist for a little heavy metal group by the name of Pantera.
Dimebag’s life was tragically cut short on December 8, 2004, when a deranged and die-hard Pantera fan by the name of Nathan Gale stormed the stage while Dimebag performed with his new group, Damageplan, and proceeded to fire multiple gunshots at Dimebag, striking him five times, once in the head. Dimebag was killed instantly by the shot to the head. Damageplan’s tour manager, Jeff “Mayhem” Thompson, was also killed after attempting to subdue the gunman. An employee of the venue, Erin Halk, was killed after attempting to rush the gunman while he was reloading, but did not succeed in time. A Damageplan fan by the name of Nathan Bray was also murdered as he attempted to perform CPR on the fallen Dimebag and Thompson.
Fortunately, police made their way into the venue before Gale could cause any more destruction. Officer James D. Niggemeyer made his way to the back of the stage and fired one shot with his 12-gauge Remington 870 shotgun that connected with Gale’s face, simultaneously ending his rampage as well as his life. After investigating the body of the assailant, it was discovered that he still had 35 rounds of ammunition remaining.
The loss of Dimebag Darrell was felt by music fans all over the world. Personally, Pantera has always been my favorite metal band. I thought I would take this post to remind everyone that the music world suffered a tragic loss in December of 2004.
In tribute, here is one of my favorite Pantera songs, “Hollow”. This song does a great job of exhibiting how Pantera was more than just a mean heavy metal band with huge riffs and growling vocals. It also features some of Dimebag’s most beautiful guitar work ever (in my opinion):