Former Pantera drummer Vinnie Paul dead at 54

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Pantera Drummer Vinnie Paul Dead at 54

Drummer Vinnie Paul, a founding member of the heavy metal band Pantera, died Friday night, the band announced on Facebook. He was 54.

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"Vincent Paul Abbott aka Vinnie Paul has passed away," Pantera wrote on Facebook. "Paul is best known for his work as the drummer in the bands Pantera and Hellyeah. No further details are available at this time. The family requests you please respect their privacy during this time."

No cause of death was given.

"Can’t believe it. R.I.P. to our brother Vinnie Paul," Anthrax tweeted, while Paul Stanley of KISS wrote, "So sad to hear of the death of Vinnie Paul. Loved when Pantera did shows with us and in later years Vinnie was always front and center at all KISS shows. RIP and condolences to his family."

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Paul, born Vincent Paul Abbott in Abilene, Texas, formed Pantera in 1981 with his brother, “Dimebag” Darrell Abbott and bassist Rex Brown, Rolling Stone reported.

Pantera led the charge of heavy metal bands during the 1990s with albums like “Cowboys From Hell,” “Vulgar Display of Power” and “Far Beyond Driven.”

The band split in 2003, Rolling Stone reported.

The Abbott brothers formed Damageplan in 2004, but the band’s tenure ended when Dimebag Abbott was shot and killed onstage by a fan in 2004, Rolling Stone reported.

Paul joined Hellyeah in 2006.

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Former Pantera drummer Vinnie Paul dead at 54

Ethan Miller/Getty Images
Drummer Vinnie Paul helped form heavy metal band Pantera during the 1990s.

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