Slash, Geezer Butler of Black Sabbath and Dave Mustaine of Megadeth were among those who paid their immediate respects online to Slayer guitarist Jeff Hanneman, who died yesterday at 49. Guns N’ Roses, Hatebreed’s Jamey Jasta and former Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy also weighed in on Hanneman, who died of liver failure. a founding member of the thrash-metal pioneers.
The guitarist, a founding member of the thrash-metal pioneers, had been on hiatus from Slayer since early 2011, when he contracted necrotizing fasciitis, a flesh-eating disease that doctors believed might have been caused by a spider bite. Hanneman almost lost him arm in the ordeal, and was briefly placed in a medically-induced coma. He received a series skin grafts and was working through physical rehabilitation, including playing guitar. Hanneman played on every Slayer release to date and penned many of their most memorable songs, including “Angel of Death,” “South of Heaven,” “Raining Blood” and “War Ensemble.”
Read on to see the music and rock community’s reactions on the death of the legendary guitarist and metal pioneer.