Dead Kennedys drummer's tragic cause of death revealed

Los Angeles, California - Dead Kennedys and Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer D.H. Peligro died in October due to effects of fentanyl and heroin, the Los Angeles medical examiner determined Tuesday.

Dead Kennedys and Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer D.H. Peligro died in October due to effects of fentanyl and heroin.
Dead Kennedys and Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer D.H. Peligro died in October due to effects of fentanyl and heroin.  © IMAGO / Future Image

Peligro died in his Los Angeles home on October 28, 2022. The musician – born Darren Henley – was 63.

His death was ruled an accident, according to the coroner database.

In October, the Dead Kennedys announced Peligro's death on Instagram. According to the post, "police on the scene stated he died from trauma to the head caused by an accidental fall." In the days following his death, Dead Kennedys remembered the drummer as "our hero."

The Golden Bachelor's Gerry Turner and Theresa Nist announce shock split!
The Bachelor The Golden Bachelor's Gerry Turner and Theresa Nist announce shock split!

"I am heartbroken," Peligro's bandmate Raymond "East Bay Ray" Pepperell wrote on Instagram.

Peligro mourned by Dead Kennedys and Red Hot Chili Peppers

D.H. Peligro joined the Dead Kennedys in 1981 and also played the drums for the Red Hot Chili Peppers in 1988.
D.H. Peligro joined the Dead Kennedys in 1981 and also played the drums for the Red Hot Chili Peppers in 1988.  © IMAGO / POP-EYE

Peligro joined the rock band as a drummer in 1981, and also played the drums for the Red Hot Chili Peppers in 1988 following drummer Jack Irons' exit. On social media, Chili Peppers bassist Flea paid tribute to his late collaborator on Instagram.

"I'm devastated today, a river of tears, but all my life I will treasure every second," he wrote in his caption. "The first time I saw you play with the DK's in '81 you blew my mind. The power, the soul, the recklessness. You became my beloved friend, so many times of every kind."

Peligro released three solo records from 1995 to 2004. He also penned the 2013 memoir, "Dreadnaught: King of Afropunk."

The Dead Kennedys held a celebration of life for Peligro in February. Attendees included Michael Jackson's daughter Paris Jackson, Jack Grisham of T.S.O.L., The Offspring's Dexter Holland, and Dead Kennedy's Pepperell and Geoffrey "Klaus Flouride" Lyall.

Cover photo: IMAGO / POP-EYE

More on Music: