Staind’s Aaron Lewis Reacts to Death of Friend and Bandmate Jon Wysocki

Staind frontman Aaron Lewis is mourning the loss of his former bandmate, Jon Wysocki. Following Wysocki's death at the age of 53 on Saturday, May 18, Lewis took to social media to pay emotional tribute to the late drummer, whom he referred to as a "friend" and "brother."

"I'm so sad. I lost my friend. A friend I loved like a brother... fought with like a brother... cared for like a brother... worried about like a brother... cried over like a brother... because he was my brother in arms. My journey would've been different without him," Lewis wrote in a message shared to his social accounts Sunday. "The battles we fought together. The battles we fought against each other. The battles we fought side by side alone with our own demons. The battles we won and the battles we lost."

(Photo: Jason Kempin/Getty Images)

Writing that Wysocki was his "friend. He was our brother," Lewis said his "heart is broken. My world has changed." He concluded by writing, "I'll see you on the other side my friend. My brother. Godspeed. My heart, my love, and my condolences go out to his family and loved ones. I'm so fucking sad. He will be missed."

Together with lead guitarist Mike Mushok and bassist and backing vocalist Johnny April, Lewis and Wysocki co-founded Staind in Springfield, Massachusetts in 1995. The group went on to release their first studio album, Tormented, in 1997. They found widespread success following the release of their major label debut, Dysfunction, co-produced by Limp Bizkit singer Fred Durst. That album included hits like "Mudshovel" and "Home." In total, Staind released seven albums – including three consecutive No. 1 albums with 2001's Break the Cycle, 2003's 14 Shades of Grey, and 2005's Chapter V – and topped the US Rock singles chart with songs like "It's Been Awhile," "So Far Away," and "Right Here" before Wysocki left the group in 2011 and was replaced by Sal Giancarelli. An exact reason for his departure is unclear, with Blabbermouth reporting that that he was fired during the making of group's self-titled seventh studio album. Entertainment Weekly cited reports of "alleged friction with Lewis."

Following his departure from Staind, Wysocki went on to perform with bands including Soil and Lydia's Castle. In a statement Saturday, Lydia's Castle shared, "on 5/18/2024 at 8:02pm, @jonwysocki4 passed away surrounded by family and friends that loved him dearly. An official statement will be developed shortly." Wysocki's cause of death was not disclosed.

In a separate statement on Sunday, Staind said, "we first met Jon through mutual friends in 1994. We came together with Mike, Aaron, and Johnny April in 1995 and founded STAIND. The 17 years that followed were some of the best memories of our times together. From practice in Ludlow, Mass to touring around the world, Jon was integral to who we were as a band. Our hearts go out to Jon's family, and fans around the world who loved him."