Legendary drummer Vinnie Paul of Pantera, Damageplan, and Hellyeah passed away at the young age of 54 yesterday -- in his sleep in his Las Vegas home according to TMZ who spoke to family members -- and the metal world is especially feeling the loss.

Randy Blythe of Lamb of God wrote this lengthy tribute on Instagram:

Very sad news this evening. This man always treated me & the guys in my band like family, from the very first time we ever met him with his brother at a Damageplan gig in Texas– whether backstage at a show, on his crazy tour bus, at his club, at his house, he was always a gracious host to us. He just wanted people around him to be happy. I didn’t see Vinnie much the last time we played a gig together because I heard he was in a very foul mood– this was highly unusual for him. Why was he in a foul mood? Because we were playing a big festival in Chicago, he had bought a TON OF FOOD to grill in the parking lot for everyone (as usual), & the fire marshall came and shut him down before he could start the bar-b-que. That’s the type of dude he was– he just wanted to make sure people were having a good time, & he took steps to make that happen. He also did me a very solid favor when I was in some very serious legal trouble a while back by writing a detailed letter to a judge explaining what had happened to his brother & the need for good stage security– that wasn’t an easy thing for him to do, but he did it anyway because he was a true friend and knew I needed some help– I’ll never forget that, & I made sure he knew I appreciated it. He also never minded when I got in his face with my camera– I took this photo with a 50mm fixed lens at a festival we were playing with Hellyeah in Iowa in 2016– that means I was basically inside his drum kit. When he saw me poking my head in there, he just turned, flashed me this grin, & kept on rocking. I love this photo– Big Vin smiling and doing what he did best. Rest In Peace, Vinnie Paul. You’ll be missed. BIG LOVE.

That photo and many more tributes, below: