A person called the police from Mr. Cornelius’s house on Mulholland Drive in the Sherman Oaks neighborhood just before 4 a.m. and reported shots had been fired, a police spokesman, Chris No, said. When officers arrived, they were let into the house and found Mr. Cornelius lying lifeless on the floor with a gunshot wound to the head that appeared to be self-inflicted, said the Los Angeles County assistant chief coroner, Ed Winter.
Mr. Cornelius was taken to Cedar-Sinai Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead at 4:56 a.m., Mr. Winter said. “It was reported as a suicide, a self-inflicted wound,” he said. “I have investigators at the hospital.”
i have a personal memory with mr cornelius from back in 1987. 
i was the wardrobe stylist for my long time friends- iris parker, valerie mackintosh and
 alisa randolph from the girl group- MADAME X.
the girls wanted to do a costume change and the production said there was no time. iris wouldn't take no for an answer so during the short commerical break they changed their costumes  on stage.
i saw don cornelius looking incredulously at the girls dressing on stage. then very keenly checking me out. he walked up to me.
i said to him, "i'm sorry mr. cornelius but they insisted." he responded looking directly at me up and down, "you just do what you need to do young man. do what you need to do."
here is that classic clip- MADAME X ON SOUL TRAIN costumes by me- RICK CASTRO.

Madame X - Just That Type Of Girl TIB-FUNK by TIB-FUNK

Madame X backstage on Soul Train hosted by the legendary Don Cornelius 1987. Styled by the iconic fetish photographer, then stylist, Rick Castro. Left to right: Iris Parker (myself), Alisa Randolph, Valerie Victoria.

mr. cornelius- you were one-of-a-kind and a trailblazer. you've help so many people's careers including mine. RIP- SIR- RIP.