DAMAGEPLAN drummer VINNIE PAUL has spoken for the first time about the loss of his brother and bandmate 'DIMEBAG' DARRELL ABBOTT, who was shot and killed onstage by a deranged fan last week (08DEC04).

Paul, who also used to play alongside his sibling in Pantera, was rocking with Abbott in Columbus, Ohio, when Nathan Gale murdered him and three others last Wednesday. Police then shot Gale dead.

Paul has issued a statement which says: "With all his greatness and accomplishments on the guitar, Dime will be missed more for his giving personality, charisma, caring for others, love and most of all his heart. Twice as big as the state of Texas.

"Dime gave it all every day to each and every one of us and our lives have forever been hollowed without him.

"Thanks to all of you for reaching out to us in this time of our immeasurable loss. Rest in peace brother Dime."

The statement also pays tribute to Damageplan's head of security, JEFFREY 'MAYHEM' THOMPSON, who was also a victim of the tragedy: "Jeffrey 'Mayhem' Thompson was friend to all, with a great personality. He bent over backward to help us all.

"He truly lived and died for his friends and made the ultimate sacrifice, giving his life to save ours. For this we will never forget. You will be missed, big man."

13/12/2004 17:39