Slipknot Call Bassist Paul Gray 'The Best Of Us'

'Paul Gray was the essence of the band Slipknot,' percussionist Shawn 'Clown' Crahan says at Iowa press conference.

In an emotional press conference held in Des Moines, Iowa, Tuesday evening (May 25), members of Slipknot remembered bassist [article id="1639900"]Paul Gray, who was found dead[/article] in an Iowa hotel room Monday morning.

The eight remaining members of the group -- all appearing unmasked -- spoke at length about their friend and bandmate, recalling a man who went above and beyond the call of duty for both Slipknot and their fanatic fanbase.

"He was everything that was wonderful about this band and about this group of people," frontman Corey Taylor said. "The only way I can sum up Paul Gray is 'love.' Everything he did, he did for everyone around him whether he knew you or not ... and that's what he's left behind for us: absolute love. I will miss him with every fiber of my heart, as will everybody at this table and everyone who knew him. He was the best of us."

"It's very important that everybody on the outside of us understands that Paul Gray was the essence of the band Slipknot. ... Paul was there from the very, very beginning, and none of us would be on the path that we're on now in life or have the sorts of life that we have without him," percussionist Shawn "Clown" Crahan added. "[article id="1639912"]Paul loved the fans[/article]. He was kind of the person in the band that really wanted everybody in the band to always get along and just concentrate on the band. He was a really great friend and a really great person. He's going to be sadly missed, and the world is going to be a different place without him."

Slipknot did not take any questions from the media and allowed Gray's wife, Brenna, to speak last about her late husband.

"Paul was my husband, an amazing person, and I want people to remember him for that," she said, fighting back tears. "And his daughter will remember him for the way he was."

The couple were expecting their first child, reportedly due in September.

Earlier on Tuesday, the Des Moines Register reported that an [article id="1640007"]autopsy of Gray's body[/article] revealed no cause of death and that the Polk County medical examiner is awaiting results of toxicology testing -- which could take up to six weeks to complete -- before ruling on a cause of death in the case.

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