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'Soul Train' creator Don Cornelius dead in apparent suicide

February 1, 2012 |  6:32 am
Don Cornelius has died.

"Soul Train" creator Don Cornelius was found dead at his Sherman Oaks on home Wednesday morning.

Law enforcement sources said police arrived at Cornelius' home around 4 a.m. He apparently died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the case was ongoing.

The sources said there was no sign of foul play, but the Los Angeles Police Department was investigating.

PHOTOS: Don Cornelius | 1936 - 2012

In a 2010 interview with The Times, he said he was excited about a movie project he was developing about "Soul Train."

"We've been in discussions with several people about getting a movie off the ground. It wouldn't be the 'Soul Train' dance show, it would be more of a biographical look at the project," he said. "It's going to be about some of the things that really happened on the show."

According to a Times article, Cornelius’ “Soul Train” became the longest-running first-run nationally syndicated show in television history, bringing African American music and style to the world for 35 years.

Cornelius stopped hosting the show in 1993, and “Soul Train” ceased production in 2006.

[Updated at 7:31 a.m.: Cornelius was 75 and had recently been divorced.

The sources say he was discovered by a family member early Wednesday morning, suffering from a gunshot wound to the head. He was rushed to a hospital, where doctors pronounced him dead.]


PHOTOS: Don Cornelius | 1936 - 2012

Cornelius died of gunshot wound to head 

Remembering Don Cornelius: 'Soul Train' creator defined an era

-- Andrew Blankstein

Photo: Don Cornelius in 2006. Credit: Damian Dovarganes / Associated Press