Former Children of Bodom singer Alexi Laiho died at age 41 in December due to complications from “alcohol-induced” liver degeneration, according to his Sinergy bandmate/wife Kimberly Goss.
“This morning I received the final forensic report with the official cause of Alexi’s passing. As his legal widow, I am privy to this information,” wrote Goss — who was married to Laiho at the time of his death, though they had been separated for years — in a lengthy Instagram post on Thursday (March 4).
“The certificate reads in Finnish, ‘Alkoholin aiheuttama maksan rasvarappeutuminen ja haiman sidekudostuminen.’ The English translation is, ‘Alcohol-induced degeneration of the liver and pancreas connective tissue.’ Furthermore, he had a cocktail of painkillers, opioids and insomnia medication in his system. The loss of this extraordinarily talented and beautiful soul is a tragedy that was entirely preventable. He had so many good years left in him. Imagine all the amazing music we could still be getting if he had just accepted help. I plead with anyone who is struggling with alcoholism or any other substance abuse problem, to please seek support. You do not have to meet this same fate. If people are trying to help you, remember that they are doing it out of love and concern, so please do not push them away. Please do not surround yourself with enablers who promote your addictions. Let this be a cautionary tale that no one is invincible.”
A post on the Children of Bodom site at the time of his death said that the beloved guitarist and singer passed away at his home in Helsinki, Finland, from “long-term health issues.”
At press time, no additional information was available on the cause of death; a spokesperson for Bodom told Billboard that Goss’ account of Laiho’s cause of death was accurate.
Laiho formed the death metal band Children of Bodom in 1993 with childhood friend drummer Jaska Raatikainen, taking their name from one of the most infamous unsolved murder cases in the country’s history, the 1960 slaying of two teenagers at Bodom Lake. Over more than twenty years, the group release 10 studio albums featuring their signature mix of death, thrash and melodic metal, which often incorporated symphonic and neoclassical touches into its hammering mix. After the band split in 2019 Laiho and rhythm guitarist Daniel Freyberg founded Bodom After Midnight.
“I do not want his death to be in vain,” Goss’ post continued. “My hope is to eventually start a memorial foundation or charity in his native, Finland to help others struggling with these same demons. This needs to be an open conversation, not a source of shame. We are all human, we all suffer, but help is out there. If his story can save even ONE life, then something good can come out of this horrible loss we have all endured.”