Fans were stunned after the beloved U.S. TV personality was found dead in his Sherman Oaks, California home on Wednesday (01Feb12) after reportedly shooting himself.
Now his son Tony Cornelius has issued a statement to U.S. news network CNN asking for time to grieve.
Tony says, “The family is saddened as we mourn the loss of Don Cornelius. At this time, we respectfully ask that you allow our family and friends the privacy necessary to get through this difficult time. We thank all the well-wishers and the fans who have supported the Soul Train legacy.”
A host of stars including soul icon Aretha Franklin, Patti LaBelle, Rihanna and actress Taraji P. Henson have paid tribute to Cornelius, who is credited with introducing a host of black singers to mainstream audiences on Soul Train.
The series ran from 1971 to 2006 and featured performances from the likes of superstars including Michael Jackson and James Brown.