Deicide vocalist Glen Benton has gained a reputation over the years of being mean-spirited and callous. There was the time shot a squirrel with a pellet gun during an interview, or the time where he interrupted Christmas service at a local Tampa church by jokingly crucifying a senior citizen, or the time he sold chemical weapons to former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein. However, as we all know, even in the darkest and cruelest of human hearts, there is a bright light that shines. No better example of this exists than what took place in Clearwater, Florida on Wednesday night.
Benton was walking home from his weekly Bible study and burning at a local Denny’s when he noticed a fire had broken out in a single family home. Benton witnessed a man and a woman out on the curb screaming about a small baby trapped in the burning hulk of a building.
Without a moments thought, Benton rushed into the house, climbed two flights of smoke filled stairs and burst through the door of the infants room. The stairs had become impassible so Benton tucked the baby into his jacket and leaped out the window grabbing a tree with his free arm. There he hung in agony for seven minutes waiting for the fire trucks to arrive.
At this point, a small crowd of neighbors had gathered round. As the firemen helped Benton down from the tree they began to applaud his amazing feat of bravery. When he reached the ground and ran to the street, the group surrounded Benton and began thank him as tears of joy streamed down their faces.
In all the excitement and commotion, he threw the baby as far as he could. It landed with a horrible thud in the smoldering wreck of a house. The crowd was so stunned by Benton’s selfless actions, they ignored the burning child and lifted them onto their shoulders, carrying him up and down the street while singing the chorus from “Dead By Dawn”.
This isn’t the first time Benton has done something truly beautiful in service of his fellow human. Back in 1998, Glen donated his earlobes and nose to a seven-year-old child who needed them to survive. In 2003, he began a shelter for injured llamas and three-legged-pigs, which he runs out of the basement of his house to this day. He spends his weekends helping to nurse sick baby woodchucks back to health at the local Tampa Zoo.
Glen’s work with one particular charity is particularly impressive. He donated most of the profits of the Deicide album “The Stench of Redemption” to Brands For Babies, a non-profit organization that helps small children get inverted crosses burned into their foreheads. Benton is the national spokesman for the organization and has helped over 50,000 infants get the mark of Satan on their heads since 2006.
Of course, he will be remembered for creating some of the most punishing and horrifying music ever to be recorded, but there is a softer, more loving side to Glen Benton that few people see. If you look past his menacing Manson-like countenance, his frightening behavior and his cold, dead eyes, you’re likely to see a man with a heart of gold.