Dave Grohl started off his eulogy by telling the story of the first words Lemmy Kilmister ever said to him: “Sorry about your friend Kurt [Cobain].” From there, it was an emotional roller coaster. Grohl brought laughs, touching stories, and finished it out with some true sadness over the loss of his idol.
The actual eulogy had issues with the live stream of the memorial, cutting out and featuring audio issues. But according to Rolling Stone, those in attendance were treated to a fine selection of stories. One showcased Lemmy’s big heart, something that let people know he was more than the drinking and smoking hard rocker:
Upon entering the dressing room with whiskey and cigarette in hand, Kilmister spotted Grohl’s newborn daughter off to the side in a crib and, without saying anything, put his cigarette out in his drink.
“To most people, that would seem like nothing, I suppose. But to me, that was my hero putting out his cigarette into his drink and putting it aside because my daughter was there in the room,” Grohl said. “I think what everybody has always known or at least learned today is that Lemmy was not only that kind of… whiskey-drinking rock and roll star, but he had the biggest heart and set such a great example because he was so kind to everyone.”
Near the end of the eulogy, Grohl recounted how both he and Lemmy shared a love for Little Richard. Lemmy is on record as calling Little Richard his idol growing up, both in past interviews and in the documentary on his life in 2010. Grohl talks about meeting Little Richard by chance at LAX, where the singer gave him an autographed religious pamphlet:
Grohl, at Lemmy’s service, took that autographed pamphlet out of his jacket pocket and became overwhelmed with emotion. “I wanted to give it to him for his birthday,” Grohl said, who then read a psalm titled “Precious Lord, Take My Hand” from the pamphlet given to him by Little Richard. “Cheers, Lemmy,” Grohl said in conclusion as a wave of amplifier distortion from a strummed bass guitar next to Kilmister’s casket ushered service goers out of the parlor.
It’s easy to tell that the Motorhead front-man meant a lot to Grohl, both as an influence and as a friend. Both have shared the stage numerous times over the years, including a recent appearance at the Golden Gods awards for Lemmy’s lifetime achievement award.
Both would also perform together at the awards, with a little assistance from Slash on guitar.