One death is a tragedy, a million is a statistic—said Stalin. Yet, every year, over 800,000 people commit suicide, according to WHO. This is both tragic and makes us wonder if this could be avoided. Certainly, these people weren’t happy. Moreover, suicide is a global phenomenon, which affects not only the young and the old, the poor and the rich but also those in the public eye.
Especially when celebrities commit suicide, it makes us wonder what circumstances led them to feel so bad that they did the unthinkable. After all, they are the people we most look up to, and in certain cases, we aspire to be them. However, behind the glitz and glamour of fame, there are real people with real struggles, and sometimes, the pressure of the public eye and expectations of perfection can be too much to bear.
To this end, in this current article, we want to look at 100 celebrities who committed suicide and their stories. Our goal is to illustrate how even fame, wealth, and popularity are not enough to guarantee a happy and fulfilling life and to show that the most popular goal—getting rich and famous—is not necessarily the best goal in life.
Perhaps a better goal could be to be happy, as this is the reason why we want money and fame in the first place. And this is exactly what we specialize here in at Optimal Happiness. We help people reach their happiest potential, which in turn gives people many different reasons to live and enjoy this living. And so if you know anyone who you think could benefit from being happier, please recommend them get in touch with us.
Now, without any further ado, here are the 100 celebrities who committed suicide, along with their stories.
Marilyn Monroe (American Actress, 1926-1962, 36 y.o.)
(1) Marilyn Monroe was an iconic and beloved American actress, model, and singer whose career spanned the 1950s and ’60s. She was a major sex symbol and starred in several films that achieved box office success, such as The Seven Year Itch (1955), Some Like It Hot (1959), and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953).
On August 5, 1962, Monroe was found dead in her home in Los Angeles, California. She had died from an overdose of barbiturates—a type of drug used to treat anxiety or sleep disorders. It is believed that Monroe’s death was intentional, as she had a history of depression and had attempted suicide several times in the past.
Monroe’s mental health had begun to deteriorate in the early 1960s. She was fired from the film Something’s Got to Give after missing too many days of work due to her chronic anxiety and depression. She was also struggling personally, dealing with the aftermath of her failed marriages, difficulty conceiving children, and feelings of insecurity about her career. Furthermore, Monroe was facing professional problems such as her public battles with studio executives, waning popularity, and diminishing opportunities.
The combination of these personal and professional issues likely pushed Monroe to take her own life. Barbiturates were found in Monroe’s system at lethal levels, enough to kill anyone who ingested them. There were also empty pill bottles near her body, leading investigators to believe that she died from an intentional overdose.
Robin Williams (American Actor & Comedian, 1951-2014, 63 y.o.)
(2) Robin Williams was an American actor and comedian who rose to fame in the 1970s with his role in the television series Mork & Mindy. He went on to have a hugely successful career in film and television, winning an Academy Award for his role in Good Will Hunting (1997). His humorous and often manic style of comedy earned him legions of fans around the world.
On August 11, 2014, Williams was found dead in his home in Tiburon, California. He had hanged himself with a belt from a doorknob, shocking many people who had known him to be a positive, happy person. However, those close to him knew that he had been battling depression for years, and his suicide was likely a result of his mental health struggles, combined with his recent diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease.
Six months prior to his death, Williams had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, but he had not yet gone public with this information. He was also struggling with depression and had a history of substance abuse. In the weeks leading up to his death, Williams had been seeing a therapist and was taking medication for his depression, but these efforts were not enough to prevent him from taking his own life.
Vincent van Gogh (Dutch painter, 1853–1890, 37 y.o.)
(3) Vincent van Gogh was a Dutch post-Impressionist painter whose work has profoundly influenced the world of art in the 20th and 21st centuries. His vast body of work, comprising of over 2,100 artworks, can be found in many renowned art galleries and museums across the globe, most notably, the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, Netherlands.
Despite his modern-day success, during his lifetime, van Gogh was largely poor and unrecognized. His struggles with mental health, including depression, psychotic episodes, and delusions, often caused him to neglect his physical health, leading to malnourishment and alcohol abuse. In a fit of rage, he famously cut off his left ear.
On the morning of July 29, 1890, he was found dead in his room at the Auberge Ravoux in the town of Auvers-sur-Oise in northern France. It is believed that van Gogh had shot himself in the stomach with a revolver and due to the severity of his wounds, he passed away two days later.
Kurt Cobain (Nirvana Lead Singer, 1967-1994, 27 y.o.)
(4) Kurt Cobain was a respected and beloved figure in the music industry, and his influence on rock music and popular culture is undeniable. His songwriting was raw and emotionally powerful and his voice had a unique quality that resonated with music fans across the world. He has been posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and his music continues to impact generations of fans.
Cobain’s mental health issues had been a source of inner turmoil for years, and he had been struggling with addiction and depression before his death. He became increasingly isolated, and his worsening physical and mental health problems caused him to turn to drugs and alcohol as a means of escape and solace. He had also expressed thoughts of suicide in interviews and lyrics.
The last days of Cobain’s life were spent in a state of despair. He had written a suicidal note addressed to his imaginary childhood friend Boddah and had taken a significant amount of heroin before killing himself. In the note, he expressed his need to escape the world, his feelings of being a fraud and his dissatisfaction with the music industry and its trappings.
Alexander McQueen (Fashion Designer, 1969-2010, 40 y.o.)
(5) Alexander McQueen was a world-renowned British fashion designer and couturier who left an indelible mark on the fashion industry with his dramatic, avant-garde style and extravagant details. After founding his own eponymous luxury fashion house, McQueen went on to win numerous awards, including British Designer of the Year (1996, 1997, 2001 and 2003) and International Designer of the Year (2003). His talent and creativity earned him the nickname ‘The King of Fashion’.
Sadly, his life was cut short when he committed suicide by hanging himself at his home in London on February 11, 2010, nine days after the death of his mother. An inquest determined that he had taken cocaine, sleeping pills, and tranquilizers before his death. In a heartbreaking handwritten note near his body, he apologized to his loved ones.
It is believed that McQueen’s mental state was greatly affected by the death of his mother and that he may have also been struggling with drug addiction. His struggles with depression were well-known, and he had attempted suicide several times in the past. His death was a tragedy, but his legacy lives on in his iconic fashion designs, which still inspire and influence the fashion industry today.
Kate Spade (Fashion Designer, 1962-2018, 55 y.o.)
(6) Kate Spade was an American fashion designer and businesswoman who is best known for co-founding the fashion brand Kate Spade New York. The brand started out as a line of handbags in 1993 but eventually expanded to include clothing, jewelry, shoes, stationery, eyewear, baby items, fragrances, and home decor.
On June 5, 2018, Spade was found dead in her Park Avenue apartment in Manhattan, New York City. She had hanged herself with a scarf on a doorknob. In a suicide note addressed to her 13-year-old daughter Frances Beatrix Spade (nicknamed “Bea”), she asked her to forgive her and told her that she loved her very much.
It is believed that Spade’s death was caused by her long-term battle with depression and anxiety. In an interview with NPR in 2017, she said that she had been feeling “quite sad” and was seeking help from a therapist and a psychiatrist. She had also been taking an antidepressant medication in an effort to improve her mental health.
In the wake of her death, the fashion world mourned the loss of a beloved designer. Her friends, family, and fans paid tribute to her with a permanent memorial in her hometown of Kansas City, Missouri. The memorial includes a statue of a young girl with a handbag, symbolizing Spade’s pioneering impact on fashion. Additionally, the Kate Spade Foundation was created in her memory, which is dedicated to supporting mental health awareness and suicide prevention.
Tim Bergling, aka Avicii (Swedish DJ, 1989–2018, 28 y.o.)
(7) Avicii (which means “the lowest level of hell” in Buddhist terms), aka Tim Bergling, was a Swedish DJ, producer, and songwriter who achieved immense fame, success, and wealth.
However, as revealed in the 2017 documentary Avicii: True Stories, Bergling suffered from severe physical and mental health issues, including anxiety, depression, and addiction to alcohol. Despite his objections, he was pressured by his manager and the entertainment industry to continue performing, even though he was clearly struggling.
On April 20, 2018, at the age of 28, Avicii committed suicide by self-inflicting wounds with a broken glass. A statement released by his publicist said that he was “not made for the business machine he found himself in; and that he suffered from anxiety and that touring was a constant trigger for it.”
It is believed that the relentless pressure to maintain his success and active lifestyle had an incredibly detrimental impact on Bergling’s physical and mental health, leading to his death. While the entertainment industry is known for its demanding and often exploitative expectations of its performers, the tragic case of Avicii is a sobering reminder of the real human cost of fame and success.
John McAfee (Businessman, 1945-2021, 75 y.o.)
(8) John McAfee was a British-American businessman and computer programmer who founded the software company McAfee Associates in 1987. He was an influential figure in the world of cryptocurrency, a vocal critic of internet security, and the creator of the first commercial antivirus software.
On February 23, 2021, he was found dead in his prison cell at the age of 75. He had been incarcerated at the Federal Correctional Institution in Barren, Kentucky since December 2020 on charges of tax evasion. An autopsy revealed that he had committed suicide by hanging himself with a bedsheet, although conspiracy theories suggested a possibility that he was murdered.
It is believed that McAfee’s death was caused by a combination of mental health issues and a lack of hope in his situation. In a letter to his lawyer, he expressed his despair, saying that he was “struggling to see a way out” and that he had “lost all hope.”
His death has since prompted a greater focus on mental health awareness and the need to support those facing difficult circumstances. McAfee’s legacy has also been highlighted, with many recognizing his accomplishments in the tech world and the impact he had on the security industry.
Chester Bennington (Linkin Park Lead Singer, 1976-2017, 41 y.o.)
(9) Chester Bennington was an American singer and songwriter who is best remembered for his iconic role as the lead vocalist of the rock band Linkin Park. In 2000, Linkin Park’s debut album, Hybrid Theory, was a monumental success, becoming certified diamond by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in 2005 and becoming one of the best-selling debut albums of all time, selling over 30 million copies worldwide.
On July 20, 2017, Bennington was found dead at his home in Palos Verdes Estates in Los Angeles County at age 41. His housekeeper discovered his body around 09:00 PDT. An autopsy later confirmed the cause of death as suicide by hanging.
In the wake of his death, numerous friends, family members, and fellow musicians spoke out about Bennington and his struggles with depression and anxiety, as well as his fear of suicide. Bennington had previously opened up about his struggles in an interview with Rolling Stone, saying that he had considered suicide many times in the past. He also discussed how difficult it was to sing about being happy when he wasn’t feeling it himself.
Keith Flint (Prodigy Lead Singer, 1969-2019, 49 y.o.)
(10) Keith Flint was the passionate and energetic frontman of The Prodigy, an English electronic dance music group who achieved huge success and international recognition. He tragically passed away from suicide by hanging at his home in Essex on March 4th, aged 49.
His bandmates Liam Howlett and Maxim released a statement on the group’s Instagram account, expressing their shock and sadness at his passing: “We can confirm the death of our brother and best friend Keith Flint. He was a true pioneer, innovator and legend who inspired and influenced generations of music fans. He will be deeply missed and forever remembered.”
The singer had long battled with depression and was open about his struggles with drugs and alcohol, but just a few weeks before his death, he spoke of being “in a good place” and declared that he was drug and alcohol free.
Chris Cornell (Soundgarden and Audioslave Lead Singer, 1964-2017, 52 y.o.)
(11) Chris Cornell was a powerful grunge-era frontman known for his work with Soundgarden and later Audioslave. Tragically, Cornell ended his life on May 17th by hanging himself in a Detroit hotel room. He was found dead at the MGM Grand Detroit hotel and a medical examiner determined that Cornell had committed suicide.
Cornell had a long and difficult history of struggling with drug addiction and alcoholism, which he attributed to his childhood feelings of inadequacy and loneliness. He made multiple attempts to seek help through rehab, but he could never maintain sobriety for long. In one of his last interviews before his death, Cornell claimed that he had finally been able to beat his addiction and had been sober for over a year. He remarked, “I feel better now that I’m older. I have a better perspective on things. And I don’t have the urge to be out there partying or doing drugs.”
However, Vicky Cornell, the late singer’s widow, noticed a change in his behavior in the days leading up to his death. She said that his attitude and outlook on life had shifted drastically, and he seemed to be in a dark place. She indicated that his addiction had resurfaced, and he was struggling to cope with the pressures of fame and the music industry.
Anthony Bourdain (Chef & TV Host, 1956-2018, 61 y.o.)
(12) Anthony Bourdain was an American chef, author, and television personality. He was a celebrity chef who hosted the TV show “Parts Unknown” on CNN. He was also a judge on Bravo’s Top Chef reality cooking competition series and was well known for his cooking books, including “Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly.”
Anthony Bourdain’s close friend and colleague Erik Ripert was the first person to become worried about Bourdain when he missed dinner and breakfast, subsequently finding him dead in his hotel room in France. Bourdain’s death was ruled as an impulsive act of suicide by hanging, and his toxicology report revealed that he had no drugs in his system at the time of his death.
He had spoken openly about his struggles with depression and addiction, and he had recently completed a rehabilitation program. His death came as a shock to many, and it was a tragic loss for the culinary world and the television industry.
In an interview with People magazine, his close friend Eric Ripert said that Bourdain had “been in a dark mood these last couple of days.”
Cheslie Kryst (Model & Attorney, 1991–2022, 30 y.o.)
(13) Cheslie Kryst was an inspiring woman who achieved success in multiple facets of her life. She was a model, attorney, and Miss USA 2019, and was a first-generation American and daughter of immigrants from the Philippines.
Kryst graduated from law school in 2017 and worked as an attorney for a few years before being crowned the first black woman to be crowned Miss USA. She used her platform to advocate for equal pay and opportunities for women in the workforce. In 2020, she took a hiatus from modeling to focus on her law career. Kryst was married and had no children.
Tragically, on January 30, 2021, Kryst took her own life, jumping from The Orion, a 60-story high-rise apartment building in Midtown Manhattan, where she resided. Her mother April Simpkins released a statement, saying that her daughter was leading a private life, hiding her “high-functioning depression” from everyone — including her closest confidant — until shortly before her death.
Kim Jong-hyun, aka Jonghyun (Korean Singer, 1990–2017, 27 y.o.)
(14) Jonghyun, aka Kim Jong-Hyun, was a Korean singer, songwriter, and radio host. He was the main vocalist of the boy band Shinee for nine years, releasing twelve albums with the group in total. He had a successful solo career as well, having released two albums and several EPs. His albums featured a variety of music styles, ranging from pop and R&B to EDM and indie-rock.
On December 18th, 2017, Jonghyun committed suicide by carbon monoxide poisoning in an apartment in Cheongdam-dong, Seoul. He was 27 years old.
Before his death, he sent concerning text messages (including “Please let me go. Tell everyone I’ve had a happy life”) to his sister, which led her to believe that he was going to take his own life. She called the police, but it was too late—he had already died from inhaling toxic fumes from a burning coal briquette.
In the months leading up to his death, Jonghyun had been open about his struggles with depression and anxiety. He had spoken out about his mental health issues on social media and in interviews, and was prescribed medication for his conditions. It is unclear if he was taking it at the time of his death.
In a suicide note that was later released to the public, Jonghyun wrote about how he felt like he was “broken from the inside” and that there was “no escape [from] the darkness.” He also apologized to his loved ones for causing them pain, and asked that they not be sad after he was gone.
Ernest Hemingway (Author, 1899–1961, 61 y.o.)
(15) Ernest Hemingway was an American journalist, novelist, short-story writer, and sportsman. He is considered one of the most influential writers of the 20th century and his works are known for their simple yet powerful prose. These novels helped him gain literary fame and earned him a spot as one of the “Lost Generation” writers.
Hemingway committed suicide in 1961 at the age of 61 by shooting himself with a shotgun at his home in Ketchum, Idaho. He had been in ill health for some time, suffering from depression, anxiety, and high blood pressure. He was also a heavy drinker, which contributed to his health problems. Towards the end of his life, Hemingway was also experiencing severe writer’s block, which no doubt added to his depression.
In the months leading up to his death, Hemingway became increasingly paranoid and even delusional, convinced that the FBI was watching him because of his associations with the Communist Party, such as his friendship with Fidel Castro, and that he was going to be arrested. Hemingway’s wife, Mary, had been trying to get him to see a psychiatrist, but he refused.
In the months before his death, Hemingway began to prepare for it. He gave away many of his possessions and made arrangements for his funeral. On the morning of July 2, 1961, he went out to the garage of his home and shot himself with a shotgun. He died instantly.
A suicide note was found next to his body, which read: “Best of luck to everybody always. P.S. Please, if possible, correct the mistakes in For Whom the Bell Tolls, they are terrible.”
Aaron Hernandez (Football Player, 1989–2017, 27 y.o.)
(16) Aaron Hernandez was an American football player who played college football for the University of Florida, where he was a member of a BCS National Championship team and was recognized as an All-American. Hernandez was drafted by the New England Patriots in the fourth round of the 2010 NFL Draft.
On June 26, 2013, Hernandez was arrested and charged with the murder of Odin Lloyd, who was dating his fiancée’s sister. On August 22, 2013, he was indicted by a grand jury for first-degree murder and five gun-related charges, and his trial began on January 29, 2015. Despite entering a plea of not guilty, Hernandez was found guilty of first-degree murder and sentenced to life imprisonment without parole at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center.
On April 19, 2017, Hernandez was found hanged in his cell by a bedsheet attached to his cell window at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley, Massachusetts; he was pronounced dead approximately an hour later. His death was ruled a suicide, and the death was met with shock and disbelief by his fans and the public. After his death, Hernandez was posthumously diagnosed with chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a degener
Virginia Woolf (Writer, 1882–1941, 59 y.o.)
(17) Adeline Virginia Woolf was an English writer, essayist, and author of immense significance in the realm of modern literature. Her writing style, often referred to as “stream-of-consciousness”, offered readers a unique insight into the inner thoughts and feelings of her characters, allowing them to experience the world around them through their own eyes.
The early years of Virginia Woolf’s life were marked by tragedy, beginning with the death of her mother when Woolf was just thirteen. This was followed by the death of her half-sister Stella two years later, and her father seven years after that. These losses had a profound effect on Woolf, and she would battle depression and anxiety for the rest of her life. On occasion she even heard voices that spoke to her in an increasingly urgent manner, which may have been more real to her than the people in her physical life.
On March 28, 1941, Virginia Woolf ended her life by walking into the River Ouse near her home in Rodmell, Sussex. Her body was not recovered until April 18 and her funeral was held on April 21. In her suicide note to her husband, Woolf wrote: “I feel certain that I am going mad again. I feel we can’t go through another of those terrible times. And I shan’t recover this time. I begin to hear voices, and can’t concentrate. So I am doing what seems to be the best thing to do. You have given me the greatest possible happiness. You have been in every way all that anyone could be.”
Sylvia Plath (Writer, 1932–1963, 30 y.o.)
(18) Sylvia Plath was an American writer and poet whose works have been highly praised and awarded, most notably with the Pulitzer Prize. Her writing often explored topics such as sexuality, family dynamics, and the challenges faced by women in the 1950s, and her most famous work is “The Bell Jar”, a semi-autobiographical novel about a young woman’s descent into mental illness.
Plath had an IQ of between 140 and 150 and was a highly intelligent individual. However, she also had an emotionally difficult life, which on one hand, inspired her to become an excellent writer, but also made her prone to mental illness. Plath battled depression for most of her life, and she was treated with electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), insulin shock treatment, and admitted to psychiatric care on multiple occasions.
She made several suicide attempts throughout her life, with her first attempt happening when she was only 20 years old, and her final attempt occurring when she was 30, when she inhaled carbon monoxide fumes from a gas oven.
Sulli Choi (South Korean Actress, Model, and Singer, 1994-2019, 25 y.o.)
(19) Sulli Choi, formerly known as Choi Jin-ri, was a South Korean singer, actress, and model. She was best known for being a former member of the popular girl group f(x). On October 14, 2019, Sulli was found dead at her home in Seongnam, South Korea. Her death was ruled a suicide, and her death has shaken the South Korean entertainment industry and fans around the world.
Sulli was known for her outspoken attitude and willingness to speak out on social issues, such as bullying and cyber-bullying. She had been a victim of cyber-bullying for years, and had been subjected to malicious comments and rumors. She had also been dealing with depression, anxiety, and panic disorder.
The night before her death, Sulli had posted a final message on her Instagram account, saying that she was “tired” of the world. Her death has sparked a debate about the culture of cyber-bullying and the need for better mental health support in South Korea. Her death has also highlighted the need for better regulation of online spaces, and for more support and understanding for those who are struggling with mental health issues.
Chris Benoit (Wrestler, 1967–2007, 40 y.o.)
(20) Chris Benoit was an iconic professional wrestler who was celebrated for his incredible talent in the WWE. He was a two-time World Heavyweight Champion and had an impressive four World Tag Team Championship wins. In 2004, he made history by winning the Royal Rumble match and further cemented his legacy in 2005 when he was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.
Unfortunately, in 2007, Benoit’s life tragically ended in a disturbing suicide. He was found dead in his home, along with the bodies of his wife and son, on June 25, 2007. It is believed that Benoit had strangled his wife and son before hanging himself with a weight machine cord. The official cause of death for Benoit’s wife and son was asphyxiation.
An autopsy report revealed that Benoit had an advanced form of brain damage, which is believed to have been caused by the many concussions and head injuries he sustained during his wrestling career. It is thought that this brain damage may have been a contributing factor to the murders, as well as the suicide. Before his death, he sent text messages to a friend saying that he had “gone crazy” and was sorry for the mess he was about to make.
Benoit’s death sparked a series of changes in the world of professional wrestling, including more stringent safety regulations, the implementation of a wellness policy, and more thorough checks for head trauma in athletes.
Jonathan Brandis (Actor, 1976–2003, 27 y.o.)
(21) Jonathan Brandis began his career as a child model and went on to become a beloved Hollywood star, appearing in a total of 20 different movies or television series, including his best-known roles in Lucas Wolenczak and seaQuest DSV. He also featured in several issues of People magazine.
In November 2003, at the age of 27, Brandis tragically took his own life, hanging himself in the hallway of his Los Angeles apartment. Autopsy results revealed that he had been drinking prior to his suicide and no suicide note was found. This sudden and devastating news sent shockwaves through Hollywood and the media.
Brandis’s friends reported that he had been exhibiting signs of depression in the months leading up to his death. He was worried about his declining career, having difficulty finding new roles and feeling anxious about his future. This, in combination with his alcohol abuse, may have pushed him to make the heartbreaking decision to take his own life.
(22) Dalida (also known as Iolanda Cristina Gigliotti) was born in Cairo, Egypt, in 1933. She was of Italian and Egyptian descent.
Dalida began singing professionally at the age of 17 and quickly became a popular artist in France. She released her first album in 1956 and had a successful music career, with more than 130 singles released over the course of her life. In addition to her music career, Dalida also starred in several films, including 1958’s Bambino and 1969’s Gigi l’amoroso.
The personal problems she faced throughout her life were a major contributor to her decision to commit suicide, such as becoming pregnant at the age of 22 to an Italian student, Lucio, and the subsequent abortion that left her infertile.
In addition, she had several failed relationships, leading to four major suicides that affected her life. First, her close friend, the singer Mike Brant, jumped to his death from an apartment in Paris. Then there was the suicide of her fiancé, the Italian singer, songwriter, and actor Luigi Tenco, who shot himself in the head.
Then, her former husband (1956–1961), Lucien Morisse, also shot himself in the head. Lastly, her lover from 1972 to 1981, Richard Chanfray, died by suicide. He killed himself by inhaling the exhaust gas of his Renault 5 car.
Dalida struggled with depression and anxiety for much of her life. On May 3, 1987, she committed suicide by taking an overdose of barbiturates. Dalida was 54 years old at the time of her death.
Johnny Lewis (Actor, 1983–2012, 29 y.o.)
(23) Johnny Lewis was an American actor best known for his portrayal of Kip “Half Sack” Epps on the FX comedy-drama series Sons of Anarchy. In 2011, Lewis suffered a traumatic brain injury from a high-speed motorcycle accident, which likely had a profound effect on his cognitive abilities.
At the time of his death, Lewis had just begun filming the fifth season of Sons of Anarchy. The show’s producers decided to write Lewis’ character out of the show as a tribute to him. Unfortunately, Lewis had a long history of drug abuse and mental health problems, and had been arrested numerous times for drug possession and assault. In 2011, he was diagnosed with schizophrenia.
On September 26, 2012, Lewis tragically killed his landlady and then fell from a rooftop in Los Angeles, dying from his injuries. He was only 29 years old.
Mark Salling (Actor, 1982–2018, 35 y.o.)
(24) Mark Salling, best known for his role as Noah “Puck” Puckerman on the musical comedy-drama television series Glee, died by suicide by hanging at the age of 35.
Salling was indicted in December 2015 on one count of receiving and possessing child pornography. In May 2016, he pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography and was awaiting sentencing at the time of his death. He would have faced four to seven years in prison under the terms of a plea deal reached with prosecutors, as well as registering as a sex offender and undergoing treatment for sexual disorders.
On January 30, 2018, Salling’s body was found near Big Tujunga Creek in Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley. The cause of death was ruled as asphyxia by hanging. In the months leading up to his death, Salling had attempted suicide before and his friends had been worried about him. He had been battling depression and was overwhelmed by the prospect of spending years in prison and the financial burden of pending lawsuits.
He was sued for sexual battery in December 2017 and was ordered to pay $175,000 to his ex-girlfriend in March 2018. This was an additional financial strain on top of the costs of his legal defense and the potential prison sentence. Salling’s family released a statement after his death, saying that “he was a gentle and loving person, a person of great creativity, who was doing his best to atone for some serious mistakes and errors of judgment.”
Sam Sarpong (Actor, 1975–2015, 39 y.o.)
(25) Sam Sarpong was a British-born actor and supermodel who appeared in films, music videos, and television shows. He was known for his roles in the ABC Family series Kyle XY and the MTV comedy series Punk’d. Sarpong was one of the first black male models for designer Tommy Hilfiger and was the face of the company in the 1990s. He also appeared in ad campaigns for Polo Ralph Lauren, Armani Exchange, and Gap.
Sarpong had battled with depression for many years, and his mental health had taken a sharp decline in the months leading up to his death. On October 26, 2015, he sadly passed away after jumping from a bridge in Pasadena, California. He was 39 years old.
Sarpong had attempted suicide several times before he finally succeeded. In an interview with ABC News shortly before his death, Sarpong said that he had “been through a lot in my life,” including the death of his sister from cancer when he was just 13 years old. “I’ve tried to kill myself maybe eight or nine times,” he said. “It gets to the point where you don’t want to live anymore.”
Sarpong’s death was ruled a suicide by the Los Angeles County coroner’s office. In a statement, his family said that he “was loved by so many people for his kind and generous heart.” They added that “we will miss him deeply and are devastated by this loss.”
Verne Troyer (Actor, 1969–2018, 49 y.o.)
(26) Verne Troyer was best known for his role as ‘Mini-Me’ in the Austin Powers film franchise. He died at the age of 49 on April 21, 2018. Troyer’s death was ruled a suicide by alcohol intoxication and his family released a statement saying that he “was an extremely caring individual who wanted to make everyone smile, be happy and laugh. He was always willing to do whatever he could to lift the spirits of those around him.”
Troyer’s battle with alcoholism was long-standing and had caused him to be hospitalized multiple times due to alcohol poisoning. He also suffered from depression and anxiety, which ultimately led to his suicide. In 2017, he was hospitalized for alcohol poisoning and his girlfriend, Brittney Powell, reported that he was in a “very dark place” before his death. Powell also said that Troyer was “the sweetest, kindest soul with the biggest heart” and that the photoshoot they did together captured his joy and sparkle.
Caroline Flack (Television Presenter, 1979–2020, 40 y.o.)
(27) Caroline Flack was a beloved host of the British TV shows The X Factor and Love Island who was found dead in her London flat on February 15, 2020. A post-mortem later confirmed that she had died by asphyxiation due to hanging. Her family released a statement saying that “We would like to thank everyone for their support and kindness during this time… we will miss her terribly.”
Flack had a long battle with mental health issues, including depression and anxiety, which she had received treatment for. She had attempted suicide and self-harmed on multiple occasions, and was well known for her difficulty dealing with the pressures and criticism that came with fame.
In the weeks before her death, she had been dealing with the fallout from an assault case in which she was accused of attacking her boyfriend with a lamp. She pleaded not guilty to the charges, but was due to stand trial in March 2020.
The day before her death, Flack posted a poignant message on Instagram: “In a world where you can be anything, be kind.”
Lindsey Pearlman (Actress, 1978-2022, 43 y.o.)
(28) Lindsey Pearlman was an accomplished American actress best known for her prominent roles in the television shows General Hospital and Chicago Justice. On the day prior to her being found dead, Pearlman called her husband and informed him of her intention to take her own life, which resulted in him desperately contacting the police in an effort to find her. Sadly, he never saw her alive again.
Lindsey’s body was discovered at the base of Runyon Canyon in Hollywood by a hiker, who immediately called the authorities. It is thought that she ended her life by overdosing on pills, as two suicide notes were found at her home and inside her car, both of which requested whoever found her to call 911.
The cause of her death is largely believed to have been her ongoing battle with depression, which she had been silently suffering from for many years.
Michael Hutchence (INXS Lead Singer, 1960–1997, 37 y.o.)
(29) Michael Hutchence was the iconic lead singer of legendary rock band INXS who was found dead in his hotel room in Sydney, Australia on November 22, 1997, shortly before 11 a.m. He was 37 years old. The cause of death was officially ruled as suicide by hanging, but many theories have since been put forth that suggest otherwise.
Hutchence had been battling depression in the months leading up to his death and had attempted suicide on at least one occasion prior. He was also under a great deal of financial and personal stress due to ongoing custody battles with his ex-partner Paula Yates over their daughter Tiger Lily. In addition, he was reportedly struggling with a cocaine addiction and had been receiving death threats from unknown sources.
On the morning of his death, Hutchence was found with a belt around his neck which was attached to the door of his hotel room. His body was discovered by a hotel employee who went to check on him after he failed to answer the phone.
Hutchence’s passing shocked the world and was felt deeply by his family, friends, and millions of fans around the globe. INXS would go on to release one final album in his memory, 1998’s Elegantly Wasted, before disbanding in 2012.
Dana Plato (Actress, 1964–1999, 34 y.o.)
(30) Dana Plato was an American actress best known for her role as Kimberly Drummond on the NBC sitcom Diff’rent Strokes (1978–1986), which earned her two Young Artist Award nominations. After the series ended, Plato struggled with drug addiction and financial problems, leading to a downward spiral of depression and despair. On May 8, 1999, the 34-year-old actress died of a drug overdose.
Investigators initially assumed an accidental overdose, but later ruled it a suicide based on Plato’s long history of substance abuse. According to reports, she had taken a few doses of a hydrocodone/acetaminophen painkiller (Lortab) and the muscle-relaxant carisoprodol (Soma), which caused her to fall asleep and never wake up.
Plato’s death left a devastating impact on her family, particularly her son Tyler. On May 6, 2010, 11 years after his mother’s death, Tyler tragically committed suicide, shooting himself in the head at the age of 25. His death was a heartbreaking reminder of the lasting damage that Plato’s substance abuse had inflicted on her loved ones.
Benjamin Keough (Musician, 1992–2020, 27 y.o.)
(31) Benjamin Keough was an American musician and actor, best known as the son of singer Lisa Marie Presley and grandson of rock ‘n’ roll legend Elvis Presley. He grew up in wealth and luxury and strongly resembled his famous grandfather.
Keough died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound on July 12, 2020, at his home in Calabasas, California. He was 27 years old. His death was ruled a suicide by the Los Angeles County coroner’s office. Keough’s death came as a shock to many, as he was reportedly “happy and healthy” just days before he took his own life.
It is believed that Benjamin felt tremendous pressure to live up to the impossible expectations of his grandfather’s success. His family and friends report that he had been struggling with depression for many years and was often overwhelmed by the comparisons and expectations that were thrust upon him. The extreme pressure to match the legendary success of his grandfather eventually became too much to bear, leading to a deep depression that would ultimately take his life.
Matthew Mindler (Child Actor, 2001–2021, 19 y.o.)
(32) Matthew Mindler was a child actor best known for his roles in the hit TV series ‘The Mentalist’ and ‘Bones’, has tragically passed away after purchasing sodium nitrate from Amazon during his first days at university.
Sodium nitrate is a chemical compound used in food preparation and has many industrial applications. It is an important precursor for the synthesis of many explosives, including TNT. When ingested, it can cause severe nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and, in high doses, can be fatal.
According to his mother Monica, Matthew’s recent Internet search history indicated that the overdose was intentional. He was reported missing on August 25 after skipping classes, and his body was found three days later on August 28.
Jean Seberg (Actor, 1938–1979, 40 y.o.)
(33) Jean Seberg was an American actor and activist best known for her performance in the 1959 French New Wave film Breathless, which made her an international star. A talented actress, she went on to star in a diverse range of films such as Paint Your Wagon, Airport, and Macho Callahan. Seberg was also an outspoken advocate for racial equality and justice, and was a passionate supporter of civil rights groups like the Black Panther Party, the American Indian Movement, and other civil rights organizations.
Her activism, however, eventually took a toll on her mental health, and she began to suffer from depression and anxiety. In 1979, she took her own life by overdosing on barbiturates. Her death was a tragedy for the civil rights movement and her courageous championing of justice and equality will not be forgotten.
There are some people who believe that Jean Seberg was killed by the FBI due to her political activism. While there is no concrete evidence to support this claim, her second husband Romain Gary has stated that the FBI planted false rumors with American media outlets claiming that her 1970 miscarriage was a Black Panther’s child. This claim has never been substantiated, but it caused a great deal of damage to Seberg’s reputation and legacy. To this day, her life and death remain a source of fascination and speculation.
Margot Kidder (Actress, 1948–2018, 69 y.o.)
(34) Margot Kidder was the beloved actress best known for her iconic portrayal of Lois Lane in the Superman films of the 1970s and 1980s. She died at her home in Livingston, Montana, on May 13 at the age of 69.
Kidder had been open about her struggles with mental illness and addiction over the years. In 1996, she spoke to PEOPLE about her battle with bipolar disorder, which led to a public breakdown in 1992. “I was never suicidal,” she said at the time. “But I was certainly an unhappy camper.”
In 2007, Kidder wrote a heartbreaking essay for The Huffington Post, in which she discussed her experience with manic depression, mentioning that although it is often seen as “stylish and romantic” in the media, “what they don’t see is that after the high comes the low, and boy, is it a doozy.”
Kidder was found dead at her home by a friend, who called 911. Park County Coroner Richard Wood said she died peacefully in her sleep. An autopsy revealed that she died from “a self-inflicted drug overdose.”
In a statement, Superman star Henry Cavill called Kidder “a bright, shining light” and said he was “heartbroken” by her death. “My heart goes out to her family, friends, and fans,” he said. “She was an incredible talent and will be forever missed. May her memory continue to bring light and hope to all those who knew her and her work.”
Ian Curtis (Singer, 1956–1980, 23 y.o.)
(35) Ian Curtis was the lead singer of the influential post-punk band Joy Division. He was known for his baritone voice and poetic lyrics, which often dealt with the subjects of love, death, and isolation. His unique vocal style and captivating lyrics drew in listeners and set the stage for the band to become one of the most influential acts of the post-punk era.
Curtis was diagnosed with epilepsy at the age of 15, and his condition worsened as he got older. He also struggled with depression and anxiety, which led to him self-medicating with alcohol. On May 18, 1980, Curtis hanged himself in his kitchen. He was 23 years old. His body was found by his wife, Deborah Curtis.
In the months before his death, Curtis had become increasingly withdrawn and depressed. He had become preoccupied with dark themes in his music and often drank heavily and isolated himself from friends and family. On the night of his suicide, he told Deborah that he had “felt like a ghost” for some time.
Curtis’s death was a shock to the music world, and it had a profound effect on the members of Joy Division. The band continued without him and changed their name to New Order. Curtis’s widow Deborah later said that “Ian wanted to be remembered as a musician and as a writer, not for the tragedy of his death.”
David Foster Wallace (Author, 1962-2008, 46 y.o.)
(36) David Foster Wallace was an acclaimed American writer, author, and professor whose works have been celebrated and studied by many. He was best known for his novel Infinite Jest, which is often regarded as one of the greatest novels of the 20th century. Wallace was the recipient of numerous awards, including the MacArthur Fellowship and the PEN/Faulkner Award.
Unfortunately, Wallace struggled with severe depression for a large portion of his life, and his mental health issues took a tragic turn when, on September 12th, 2008, he was found dead in his home in Claremont, California. After ceasing to take his medication in the days preceding his death, Wallace had taken his own life by hanging himself with a belt from the ceiling of his office.
Rob Pilatus (Model, 1965–1998, 32 y.o.)
(37) Robert Pilatus was the former member of the musical duo Milli Vanilli, best known for being caught lip-syncing on stage. This humiliation, coupled with his struggles with drug addiction and bipolar disorder, led him to a tragic demise in 1998 at the age of 35. On April 3, he was discovered dead in a lodging close to Frankfurt, Germany, having consumed a lethal combination of alcohol and pills, according to Bild am Sonntag.
It had been exposed that Rob and his partner Fabrice Morvan had not sung a single note on their best-selling album and it had all been lip-synced, leading to the forced return of their Grammy in 1990. This series of events had a devastating effect on Rob’s mental health, pushing him into severe depression and leading him to rely heavily on drugs as a means of escape. He reportedly entered drug rehabilitation centers multiple times, yet was never able to fully recover.
At the time of his death, it was ruled accidental. However, due to his history of mental illness and drug addiction, many people believe he made the conscious decision to take his own life.
Capucine (Model and actress, 1928-1990, 61 y.o.)
(38) Capucine (aka Germaine Hélène Irène Lefebvre) was a French fashion model and actress who is best remembered for her comedic roles in The Pink Panther (1963) and What’s New Pussycat? (1965). She began her career in the early 1950s as a fashion model, becoming one of the most sought-after models of the decade. Capucine moved to Hollywood in the late 1950s and began to appear in films, starting with a small part in The Green Mare (1959). She then starred in several European and American films, such as The Pink Panther and What’s New Pussycat?.
However, her fame began to decline in the 1970s and she eventually returned to Europe, appearing in a few more films before retiring from acting in 1982. In 1990, at the age of 62, Capucine committed suicide by jumping out of a window of her apartment on Avenue Montaigne in Paris. Although the official report stated that she had been suffering from depression, her friends and family disputed this claim, insisting that she had been in good spirits before her death.
Tony Scott (Film director, 1944–2012, 68 y.o.)
(39) Tony Scott was an iconic and influential film director, producer, and screenwriter who made a lasting impact on the movie industry. During his illustrious career, he directed a number of hugely successful films, including “Top Gun,” “Crimson Tide,” “Days of Thunder,” “True Romance,” and “The Taking of Pelham 123,” to name but a few. He also had an extremely close relationship with his brother, the acclaimed director Ridley Scott, who is responsible for films such as “Alien,” “Blade Runner,” “Thelma and Louise,” and “Gladiator.”
Although Tony had been suffering from cancer for some time, medical reports indicated that he was in remission at the time of his death. On August 19, 2012, he took his own life at the age of 69 by jumping off the Vincent Thomas Bridge in San Pedro, Los Angeles. Despite leaving a suicide note, the contents of this note were not released to the public.
George Reeves (American actor, 1914–1959, 45 y.o.)
(40) George Reeves was an American actor, widely renowned for his iconic portrayal of the beloved superhero, Superman, in the 1950s television program Adventures of Superman. On June 16, 1959, Reeves was found dead at his home in Los Angeles, California, with a gunshot wound to the head. He was 45 years old. The coroner ruled his death a suicide, but many people have continued to question this verdict due to the many unresolved questions and inconsistencies that arise from the available evidence.
A variety of theories have been proposed to explain Reeves’ mysterious death, ranging from murder by someone he knew to involvement from the Mafia, or even an accidental shooting. However, despite decades of speculation, no person has ever been formally charged for the crime, and the truth behind Reeves’ death continues to remain elusive.
Lee Thompson Young (Actor, 1984-2013, 29 y.o.)
(41) Lee Thompson Young tragically took his own life at the age of 29 shocking the world and devastated his fans. He was best known for his roles in the Disney Channel show “The Famous Jett Jackson” and the TV series “Rizzoli & Isles,” and was found dead in his Los Angeles apartment on August 19, 2013.
Young had been suffering from depression prior to his death and had been receiving treatment for the condition. He had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, and had been taking medication for it.
In the wake of his death, the Lee Thompson Young Foundation was created in order to help remove the stigma surrounding mental illness. The foundation not only raises awareness for mental health, but also provides support for those who are suffering from mental illness. The foundation also provides resources and financial assistance to families struggling with mental health issues so they can access treatment and support.
Steve Bing (Film Producer, 1965–2020, 55 y.o.)
(42) Steve Bing was a prolific film producer and screenwriter who sadly passed away at the age of 55. The cause of death is still unknown, although the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) is currently investigating. Bing was best known for his work on films such as Get Carter, Kangaroo Jack, The Polar Express and the 2003 remake of The Cat in the Hat, starring Mike Myers.
Bing was also an incredibly generous philanthropist and gave away millions of dollars to numerous charitable causes throughout his life. His most notable donation was a $50 million gift to the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County in 2000. He also had a daughter with actress Elizabeth Hurley, whom he never met, leading some to speculate that he may have been feeling overwhelmed by the responsibility of his various philanthropic commitments.
On June 22, 2020, Bing took his own life by jumping from the 27th floor of his apartment building in Los Angeles. His body was later discovered in the courtyard below. The Los Angeles County coroner’s office concluded that his death was a suicide.
Brian Keith (Actor, 1921–1997, 75 y.o.)
(43) Brian Keith was an iconic American actor, best known for his role as Uncle Bill Davis in the long-running sitcom Family Affair (1966–1971). He was also featured in numerous films and television shows throughout his impressive career.
Keith committed suicide at his home in Malibu, California on November 24, 1997 by shooting himself in the head with a .38 caliber revolver. His wife discovered his body after she returned home from running errands. The couple had been married for 33 years at the time of Keith’s death. A statement released by Keith’s publicist said that the actor had been suffering from health problems in recent years and had been in pain.
A few weeks before his death, Keith had made plans to move into a retirement home due to his declining health and financial difficulties. His daughter Daisy spoke to The Los Angeles Times about her father, saying that he “wasn’t the type of person to leave a note or anything like that.” Daisy believed that her father decided to take his own life because “he was in so much pain and he just wanted it to end.”
David Hamilton (Photographer & Film Director, 1933-2016, 82 y.o.)
(44) David Hamilton was a renowned British photographer and film director. He was best known for his distinctive soft-focus style and for his work in the glamour genre, which often featured young and scantily-clad women.
He began his career as a fashion photographer for British Vogue in the 1960s and his work soon gained international recognition, cementing his place as one of the most influential photographers of his generation. In the 1970s, he went on to direct several controversial films, including “Bilitis” and “Lovely To Look At.”
In 2016, Hamilton was accused of sexual harassment and abuse by several of his former models, including Carole Tranchant and Sarah Doukas. He denied the allegations, but the scandal significantly tarnished his legacy. Subsequently, he died by suicide at the age of 82.
The accusations against Hamilton sparked widespread outrage in the art and photography community. Many of his admirers were deeply affected by the news and his legacy continues to be a source of controversy. Nevertheless, his work remains influential and his influence is still felt in the fashion and film industries today.
Hunter S. Thompson (Journalist, 1937–2005, 67 y.o.)
(45) Hunter S. Thompson was an influential and pioneering American journalist, writer, author, and content creator who made a major mark on the world of journalism through his development of the gonzo journalism movement. He is best remembered for his classic work Hell’s Angels (1967), for which he spent an entire year living and riding with the Hells Angels motorcycle club in order to create a first-hand account of the lives and experiences of its members. Thompson was also a highly respected figure in the literary and journalistic worlds, with his works inspiring numerous writers and journalists.
Unfortunately, Thompson’s life was cut short at the age of 67 when he committed suicide by gunshot on February 20, 2005, following a series of health issues. In accordance with his wishes, his remains were fired from a cannon in a lavish ceremony funded by his good friend Johnny Depp. The ceremony was attended by numerous friends and admirers, including then-Senator John Kerry and actor Jack Nicholson.
Leslie Cheung (Actor & Musician, 1956-2003, 46 y.o.)
(46) Leslie Cheung was a revolutionary figure in Hong Kong’s entertainment industry, leaving an indelible mark on show business. As an actor, singer, and songwriter, he achieved international success in the 1980s and 1990s, releasing more than 40 music albums and appearing in over 50 films. He was praised for his versatile acting skills and androgynous persona, showcased in his renowned roles in “Farewell My Concubine” and “The Phantom Lover.”
Cheung was a trailblazer for the LGBTQ+ community in Hong Kong, fearlessly embracing his sexuality despite the criticism he faced. Unfortunately, he was diagnosed with severe clinical depression in 2003, leading to a chemical imbalance in his brain that eventually took his life. On April 1, 2003, Leslie Cheung tragically died by suicide after jumping off the 24th floor of the Mandarin Oriental hotel in Hong Kong. He was just 46 years old.
Yukio Mishima (Author, 1925-1970, 45 y.o.)
(47) Yukio Mishima was a renowned Japanese author, poet, playwright, actor, model, Shintoist, and nationalist. He is widely regarded as one of the most influential and acclaimed authors of the 20th century, and his works often explore themes of individualism, sexuality, and the struggle between the individual and society.
His novels include the acclaimed Confessions of a Mask, The Temple of the Golden Pavilion, and Kyoko’s House. Mishima was also an outspoken nationalist and was fascinated by the samurai tradition, which he wrote extensively about, emphasizing themes of love, beauty, and desire within traditional Japanese culture.
In 1970, Mishima attempted to stage a coup d’état in Japan, but it failed and he subsequently committed ritual suicide, or seppuku. Additionally, Mishima founded the Tatenokai, an unarmed civilian militia, and was a prominent member of the Japanese right-wing political movement. He was an iconoclast in both his writings and his political beliefs, and his life and works continue to be the subject of much debate and discussion.
Hervé Villechaize (Actor, 1943–1993, 50 y.o.)
(48) Hervé Villechaize was a French actor and painter who is best known for his iconic roles as Mr. Roarke’s assistant “Tattoo” on the television series Fantasy Island and Nick Nack in the James Bond film The Man with the Golden Gun.
Born with dwarfism, Villechaize suffered from chronic pain due to his oversized internal organs putting increasing pressure on his body, forcing him to often sleep in a kneeling position so he could breathe more easily. Despite his condition, Villechaize persevered and went on to become an internationally recognized actor and painter.
However, after a long battle with his condition, in 1993, at the age of 50, Villechaize tragically committed suicide by shooting himself in the chest. His suicide note revealed his profound grief at having to leave his friends and family, and his inability to live with his condition any longer.
Margaux Hemingway (Model & Actress, 1955–1996, 41 y.o.)
(48) Margaux Hemingway was an American model and actress who had an incredibly successful career, appearing on the cover of over 500 magazines. She was also the granddaughter of Ernest Hemingway (who is also on our Celebrities Who Committed Suicide list), one of the most renowned authors of all time.
Despite her success, Hemingway grappled with addiction throughout her life and was candid about her struggles with drugs and alcohol in interviews. She sought help and treatment for her addictions, but ultimately succumbed to them in 1996, when she passed away from an overdose of phenobarbital, a barbiturate used to treat anxiety and seizures, at the age of 41.
Freddie Prinze (Stand-up comedian, 1954–1977, 22 y.o.)
(49) Freddie Prinze was an American stand-up comedian and actor who gained fame in the 1970s with his role on the ABC sitcom Chico and the Man. Unfortunately, despite his success, Prinze suffered from depression, which deepened in the weeks after his wife filed for divorce. On the night of his death, he called numerous family members and friends to say goodbye, and left behind a note stating that he had decided to take his own life.
It was later revealed that Freddie Prinze was known for playing Russian roulette as a way to scare his friends for fun. On the night of his death, he asked his business manager, Marvin “Dusty” Snyder, to come over. While Snyder was visiting, Prinze put a gun to his head and fatally shot himself in front of him. Tragically, this time the gun was loaded with bullets, and Freddie Prinze was serious about his intentions.
Sawyer Sweeten (Actor, 1995–2015, 19 y.o.)
(50) Sawyer Sweeten was an American actor known for his role on the sitcom Everybody Loves Raymond as Geoffrey Barone, the son of Ray and Debra Barone. On April 23, 2015, at the age of 19, Sweeten tragically died by suicide by gunshot to the head at his mother’s home in Texas.
At the time of his suicide, there was no indication that he was suffering from depression or any other mental illness, leaving friends and family shocked and grieving.
Experts have suggested that celebrities often experience difficulties adjusting to life without the fame and attention of their childhood. This is especially true for those who experienced the height of fame during their formative years. It is possible that the sudden loss of the attention and adoration Sawyer Sweeten experienced during his time on Everybody Loves Raymond, combined with the lack of mental health resources available to him, may have contributed to his untimely death.
Justin Pierce (Actor, 1975–2000, 25 y.o.)
(51) Justin Charles Pierce was an American actor, director, screenwriter, and skateboarder who is best remembered for his role as Casper in Larry Clark’s 1995 film Kids and his leading role in the 2002 film White Oleander.
Pierce had a difficult childhood, having been expelled from seven different schools. Despite facing many obstacles, he was able to turn his life around and find success in Hollywood.
Unfortunately, despite his professional accomplishments, Pierce was struggling with depression and drug abuse. On July 29, 2000, he committed suicide in his Los Angeles hotel room, leaving a suicide note that stated he was “tired of being tired.”
Inger Stevens (Actress, 1934–1970, 35 y.o.)
(52) Inger Stevens was an incredibly talented Swedish-American actress, renowned for her roles in The Farmer’s Daughter and Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds. Born in Stockholm, Sweden, in 1934, she experienced a difficult childhood due to her parents’ divorce at a young age. At the age of 12, Stevens moved to the United States with her mother and began working as a model to support her family financially.
Despite her success, Stevens’ life was tragically cut short. On April 30, 1970, she committed suicide by overdosing on barbiturates. Her untimely death was met with an immense outpouring of grief from the Hollywood community and her fans alike. To this day, her legacy remains strong, as she is remembered for her remarkable talent and grace.
Pedro Armendariz (Actor, 1912–1963, 50 y.o.).
(53) Pedro Armendariz was a Mexican actor known for his roles in The Bridge on the River Kwai and High Noon.
In 1956, Armendáriz had a role in The Conqueror. It was filmed in the state of Utah, at a time when the US government was conducting atmospheric nuclear testing in neighboring Nevada. Armendáriz and the other actors and crew were unaware of the dangers of radiation, and many of them developed cancer as a result of filming there. 91 of the 220 people involved in the production of The Conqueror were diagnosed with cancer, with 46 of them dying from the illness or related complications.
Armendáriz was one of those people, and he developed terminal cancer. He committed suicide in 1963, at the age of 50, as a way to escape from the pain and suffering he was going through.
Hana Kimura (Wrestler & Reality TV Star, 1997–2020, 22 y.o.)
(54) Hana Kimura was a Japanese professional wrestler and reality TV star. She was best known for her appearances on the Netflix show Terrace House: Tokyo and the World Wonder Ring Stardom wrestling promotion.
Kimura started wrestling when she was 18 years old and quickly made a name for herself in the Japanese wrestling scene. In 2019, she made her debut on Terrace House: Tokyo, which helped her gain international fame.
On the morning of May 23, 2020, Hana Kimura posted images on social media of herself harming herself. She had received a lot of hate comments, and she wanted to show them that this is what their words were doing to her. Later that day, Kimura took her own life by ingesting hydrogen sulfide, at the age of 22.
Brad Davis (Actor, 1949–1991, 41 y.o.)
(55) Bradley Davis was an acclaimed American actor, best known for his roles in Midnight Express, Chariots of Fire, and Querelle. Born in Tallahassee, Florida, to a dentist father whose career had been disrupted by alcoholism, he had a brother who was also an actor. Davis endured physical and sexual abuse from both parents, leading to a long-term battle with substance abuse and mental health issues.
Despite his personal struggles, Davis managed to achieve sobriety in 1981. Five years later, he was diagnosed with HIV, a condition he kept hidden from the public so he could continue to work and provide for his family. Sadly, Davis passed away in 1991 at the age of 41 due to AIDS-related complications.
Abbie Hoffman (Activist & Author, 1936–1989, 52 y.o.)
(56) Abbie Hoffman was an American political activist and author best known for his involvement in the anti-war movement and the counterculture of the 1960s. He was a key figure in movements such as the Free Speech Movement and the Yippies, and he authored the books Steal This Book and The Revolution for the Hell of It.
Hoffman was found dead in his apartment in Solebury Township, Pennsylvania, on April 12, 1989, at the age of 52. The cause of death was suicide by overdose from 150 phenobarbital tablets and alcohol. Nearby, 200 pages of notes were found which detailed his moods.
He had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 1980, and friends state that he was depressed when his mother was diagnosed with cancer, who died at the age of 90, as well as unhappy about reaching middle age.
Junior Seau (Football player, 1969–2012, 43 y.o.)
(57) Junior Seau was a beloved professional football player who spent 20 years in the NFL, playing for the San Diego Chargers, New England Patriots, and Miami Dolphins. Despite his successful career, tragedy struck when Seau was found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest on May 2, 2012, at the age of 43.
The autopsy revealed that he had suffered from chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative brain disease caused by repeated head trauma, likely due to the concussions he sustained while playing in the NFL.
His family sued the NFL for wrongful death, citing a theory that Seau had experienced depression or had issues with substance abuse/addiction due to financial and relationship issues, including being arrested for domestic violence against his girlfriend.
Don Cornelius (Television Host & Producer, 1936–2012, 75 y.o.)
(58) Don Cornelius was an influential figure in the music industry. Comprising a remarkable career that began in radio, Cornelius created the iconic show Soul Train in 1971. The Soul Train television program was a beloved and immensely popular show that showcased the best in R&B and soul music, and helped launch the careers of countless prominent artists.
Cornelius was also responsible for other innovations such as the Soul Train Line, which allowed viewers to dance along with the performers. He was an ardent promoter of black music and culture, and a passionate advocate for civil rights, for which he was recognized with awards from the NAACP and National Urban League.
Unfortunately, Cornelius’ life ended tragically on February 1, 2012, when he was found dead in his Los Angeles home from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.
Mindy McCready (American singer, 1975–2013, 37 y.o.)
(59) Mindy McCready was an American country music artist best known for her debut album, Ten Thousand Angels, which was certified double Platinum. Additionally, her album If I Don’t Stay the Night was certified Gold. Active in the music industry from 1995 until her untimely death in 2013, McCready recorded a total of five studio albums.
McCready struggled with substance abuse, legal issues, and depression. She had attempted suicide or committed suicide at least three times prior to her death. Her despondence was further compounded when her boyfriend died by suicide one month prior. She appeared on the reality TV show “Celebrity Rehab” with Dr. Drew in an effort to seek help for her mental health issues.
Ultimately, her depression proved too much for her to bear, and she died by a self-inflicted gunshot wound on February 17, 2013, at the age of 37.
George Sanders (Film actor, 1906–1972, 65 y.o.)
(60) George Sanders was a renowned British film and television actor and entertainer, most notable for his Academy Award-winning performance in “All About Eve.” He also starred in films such as “Rebecca,” “Ivanhoe,” and “The Saint.” In his later years, Sanders was afflicted with dementia, depression, anxiety, and other physical ailments, including a stroke.
Tragically, Sanders left this world in 1972 via suicide, leaving behind a suicide note that read: “Dear World, I am leaving because I am exhausted. I feel I have lived long enough. I am leaving you with your worries in this sweet cesspool. Good luck.” This decision was influenced by the death of his daughter, who passed away just three days after her birth in 1970.
Brynn Hartman (Television News Anchor, 1957–1998, 40 y.o.)
(61) Brynn Hartman was an American television news anchor who made history in 1996 by becoming the first female co-anchor of Good Morning America.
Born in Minnesota, Hartman’s career in journalism began with a news reporter role for a local newspaper. With her exemplary work, she quickly rose through the ranks to become a highly sought-after television news anchor. After her one-year stint on Good Morning America, Hartman left the show.
Tragically, Hartman’s life came to an end on May 13, 1998, when she shot and killed her husband Phil before taking her own life.
Mike Thalassitis (Reality TV Star & Footballer, 1993–2019, 26 y.o.)
(62) Mike Thalassitis was a British reality television star and professional footballer of Greek Cypriot heritage, who appeared on the ITV show Love Island in 2017.
Thalassitis was born in Cyprus to Greek parents before moving to England with his family at the age of six. He played football for several non-league teams, including St Albans City, Margate and Chelmsford City, before appearing on Love Island.
Tragically, on March 16, 2019, Thalassitis was found dead in a park in North London, having taken his own life.
Rick Genest (Model & Actor, 1985–2018, 32 y.o.)
(63) Richard Genest, better known by his stage name Zombie Boy, was a Canadian model and actor known for his unique appearance. He embraced his unconventional look and gained notoriety for his unique look. His career as a model led him to appear in Lady Gaga’s music video “Born This Way”.
In August 2018, Genest was found dead in his apartment in Montreal after apparently falling from the balcony. At first, police sources suggested that Genest’s death may have been a suicide, but in October 2019, the coroner concluded that it was an accident. His death came as a shock to many, with tributes being paid to him and his career being remembered for its success.
Ashley Massaro (Wrestler & Reality TV Star, 1979–2019, 39 y.o.)
(64) Ashley Massaro was a groundbreaking American professional wrestler and reality television star who appeared on WWE from 2005 to 2008.
After winning the WWE Diva Search competition in 2005, she quickly rose to prominence, becoming a mainstay on WWE programming.
Tragically, on May 16, 2019, Massaro was found dead in her Long Island home after an apparent suicide by hanging.
Lucy Gordon (Actress, 1980–2009, 28 y.o.)
(65) Lucy Gordon began her career as a model before transitioning to acting, appearing in films such as Spider-Man 3 and Serendipity. Born in England, she moved to New York to further her acting career before relocating to Paris, France to live with her boyfriend, a renowned cinematographer.
Sadly, Gordon tragically took her own life by hanging, leaving two notes behind. One expressing her sadness and the other, which was not made public. Just prior to her death, she completed filming for Gainsbourg, which was released soon after her passing.
Mary Kay Bergman (Voice Actress, 1961–1999, 38 y.o)
(66) Mary Kay Bergman was an American voice actress renowned for her work on South Park. After a successful career as a radio DJ, Bergman moved to Los Angeles to pursue her dream of becoming an actor and quickly achieved success, lending her voice to iconic animated shows such as The Simpsons and Rugrats.
On November 11, 1999, Bergman sadly passed away at her home from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. Although the exact reason for her death remains a mystery, reports suggest that she had been suffering from depression and struggling with her mental health prior to her passing.
Houston Tumlin (Child Actor, 2000–2020, 20 y.o.)
(67) Houston Tumlin was an American child actor best known for his role as Abraham Lincoln’s son in the Steven Spielberg-directed drama, Lincoln. At a young age, Tumlin quickly rose to fame with roles in both television and film.
However, after his time in the military, his mother reported that he suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression. On March 23, 2021, Tumlin was tragically found dead in his Pelham, Alabama home from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.
Sophie Gradon (Reality TV Star, 1987–2018, 32 y.o.)
(68) Sophie Gradon was a British reality television star best known for her appearance on the ITV show Love Island in 2016.
Before appearing on the show, she worked as a model and was also active in charity work, serving as an ambassador for the mental health charity CALM.
Gradon was tragically found dead in her home on June 20th, 2018. Her death was later determined to be a suicide by asphyxiation.
Stella Tennant (Model, 1970–2020, 50 y.o.)
(69) Stella Tennant was a British model who was widely regarded as one of the most influential fashion icons of the 1990s. Her career took off shortly after she started modeling, and she gained immense fame when she appeared on the cover of Vogue magazine five times. Not only that, but she also walked the runway for renowned international fashion houses such as Chanel, Givenchy, and Versace.
Sadly, on December 22, 2020, Tennant was found dead at her home in Scotland. It was later revealed that her death was a result of suicide, which was preceded by a long struggle with her mental health.
Rachel Roberts (Actress, 1927–1980, 53 y.o.)
(70) Rachel Roberts was a renowned British actress and entertainer who was nominated for an Academy Award, Golden Globe, and won three British Academy Film Awards. Despite her success, she suffered from mental illness, alcohol abuse, and exhibited erratic behavior, such as dropping to the ground like a dog and biting people on their legs, as well as undressing in public.
It is thought that her separation from actor Rex Harrison had a significant impact on her mental well-being. A year prior to her untimely death on November 26, 1980 at the age of 53, Rachel had reportedly attempted to win Harrison back. On the day of her death, she had consumed an excessive amount of alcohol, barbiturates, and lye, leading to her suicide.
Richard Farnsworth (Actor, 1920–2000, 80 y.o.)
(71) Richard Farnsworth was an Academy Award-nominated character actor who made an impressive six-decade career out of more than 200 films and television shows, with notable roles in “The Grey Fox” and “Comes a Horseman.” He started his career as a stuntman in the 1930s.
Unfortunately, Farnsworth was dealing with the physical pain of cancer and degenerative bone disease and he sadly chose to take his own life on October 6, 2000, at his ranch in Lincoln, New Mexico. He was 80 years old.
Daisy Coleman (Activist & Sexual Assault Survivor, 1997–2020, 23 y.o.)
(72) Daisy Coleman was an American sexual assault survivor and activist who was a central figure in the 2016 documentary film Audrie & Daisy, which explored her experiences as a teenager after being raped by a high school football player. The trauma of the attack propelled Coleman to become a sexual assault activist, with her story featured in the documentary as she sought to raise increased awareness of this devastating social issue.
However, the guilt and shame she endured ultimately became too much to bear. On August 04, 2020, at the age of 23, Coleman committed suicide. An autopsy revealed that she had ingested a mixture of fentanyl, cocaine, and ethanol. Her mother, Melinda Coleman, poignantly noted: “She was my best friend and amazing daughter. I think she had to make it seem like it was OK, like she could handle everything. But it got to be too much. I wish I could have taken away her pain.”
Del Shannon (Singer & Songwriter, 1934–1990, 55 y.o.)
(73) Del Shannon was an American singer and songwriter who rose to fame in the late 1950s and early 1960s as a pioneer of the then-emerging rockabilly genre. He was renowned for his high-pitched, yodeling vocal style and his distinct guitar sound.
Sadly, Shannon was plagued by depression and alcoholism throughout his life. On February 8, 1990, the artist tragically committed suicide at his Santa Clarita home by shooting himself in the head with a shotgun. He was 56 years old. Shannon will forever be remembered for his iconic hit “Runaway”, which still resonates with music fans to this day.
Gig Young (Actor, 1913–1978, 64 y.o.)
(74) Gig Young was a renowned American actor who was widely known for his appearances in films such as They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? and The Dirty Dozen.
Despite his success, Young’s life was marred by his battle with alcohol abuse, which began in the 1950s, resulting in the end of his marriage and the loss of several acting roles. Tragically, on October 21, 1978, Young took his own life in his New York City apartment at the age of 63.
Charles Rocket (Actor & Comedian, 1949–2005, 56 y.o.)
(75) Charles Rocket first gained national recognition when he was cast as a member of the first season of Saturday Night Live. Unfortunately, he was fired from the show early in 1981 following an inappropriate phrase uttered during the live broadcast. In subsequent years, Rocket starred in the television series Moonlighting and had a leading role in the comedy film Dumb and Dumber.
By the early 2000s, Rocket began experiencing financial hardship which ultimately led to him filing for bankruptcy in 2004. This difficult situation forced him to sell his home and move into a trailer park. The stress of his financial difficulties is believed to have been a contributing factor to his eventual suicide.
On October 15, 2005, Rocket was found dead of a gunshot wound at his trailer park home. At the time of his death, he was 56 years old.
Stevie Ryan (American YouTuber, 1984–2017, 33 y.o.)
(76) Stevie Ryan, born on June 2, 1984 in Riverside, California, was an American YouTube character, actress, celebrity, entertainer, and comedian. She was popular for her YouTube videos and for appearing on the VH1 series Stevie TV.
On July 1, 2017, the day before her 33rd birthday, Ryan committed suicide by hanging herself. This devastating news came just hours after she posted a heartbreaking tribute to her late grandfather on Twitter, expressing how much she missed him. Ryan’s death stunned her friends, family, and fans around the world.
Charles Boyer (Actor, 1899–1978, 79 y.o.)
(77) Charles Boyer was born in Figeac, Lot, France, to a family of wine merchants. He first appeared on the stage in 1920 and became a Hollywood star in 1936 with his acclaimed portrayal of Pepe le Moko in the movie Algiers. He is perhaps best remembered for his roles in the classic 1940s films Gaslight and The Magnificent Ambersons.
Tragically, Boyer was faced with multiple losses in 1978. His wife, actress Gene Tierney, passed away from cancer four days before he committed suicide at the age of 79 by taking sleeping pills. He had been taking care of Tierney, who had been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia in the 1960s, until her death in 1991. Additionally, he was also dealing with the death of his mother.
Mary Ure (Actress, 1933–1975, 42 y.o.)
(78) Mary Ure was a beloved Scottish actress renowned for her powerful performances in films such as The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie and The Wicker Man. Despite her success, Ure suffered from the debilitating effects of bipolar disorder, leading her to self-medicate with alcohol and drugs.
This problematic behavior had a detrimental impact on her personal life, resulting in two failed marriages and estrangement from her children. Tragically, on April 15, 1975, Ure took her own life by overdosing on barbiturates. She was just 42 years old at the time of her death.
Simone Battle (Singer & Actress, 1989–2015, 25 y.o.)
(79) Simone Battle was an American singer, dancer, and actress. A finalist in the year of 2011 on The X Factor Show and a member of the girl group G.R.L., her group achieved popularity for their hit songs “Vacation,” “Ugly Heart,” and “Wild Wild Love” featuring Pitbull.
Unfortunately, Battle had struggled with depression and anxiety for much of her life, and on September 5, 2014, she tragically committed suicide by hanging herself at her home in Los Angeles, California, at the age of 25.
Chris Kanyon (Wrestler & Actor, 1970–2010, 40 y.o.)
(80) Chris Kanyon was an American professional wrestler and actor who won several prestigious titles during his career. He competed in World Championship Wrestling (WCW), the World Wrestling Federation (WWF), and Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW), becoming a one-time WCW United States Champion, a one-time WWF Intercontinental Champion, and a two-time WCW Tag Team Champion. In 2006, Kanyon publicly came out as gay after his release from the WWE.
Sadly, Kanyon was no stranger to mental health issues, and in 2010, he attempted suicide by taking pills and jumping off the George Washington Bridge, but was fortunately rescued by police. Tragically, on April Fool’s Day, 2020, he committed suicide by overdosing on painkillers. He was only 40 years old. His suicide note revealed that he had been suffering from depression for many years.
Miroslava Stern (Actress, 1926–1955, 29 y.o.)
(81) Miroslava Stern was a Czechoslovak-Mexican film actress who, in 1941, was taken to Mexico by her mother in order to escape the war with her adoptive Jewish father. In Mexico, she studied acting and starred in several films from 1946 to 1955, as well as three Hollywood films during the same time.
Her most famous movie, Ensayo de un crimen (Rehearsal for a Crime), was filmed in 1955. Sadly, shortly after filming ended, Miroslava committed suicide by overdosing on sleeping pills.
Roy Raymond (Businessman, 1947–1993, 46 y.o.)
(82) Roy Raymond was an American businessman who founded the lingerie retailer Victoria’s Secret after feeling embarrassed trying to buy lingerie for his wife. The store was successful for a few years and was able to expand into five more stores and a catalog business.
However, Raymond’s philosophy of marketing to male customers eventually proved to be unprofitable and Victoria’s Secret filed for bankruptcy. The company was then sold to Leslie Wexner, another American businessman, for the approximate value of $1 million. After transitioning to selling to female customers, Victoria’s Secret became one of the most successful lingerie retailers in the world and had a net worth of over $1 billion.
On August 26, 1993, Raymond devastatingly took his own life by jumping from the Golden Gate Bridge. Friends and family suggested that the suicide was a result of the humiliation he felt for selling the company for such a low price.
Peg Entwistle (Actress, 1908–1932, 24 y.o.)
(83) Peg Entwistle was a British-born actress who moved to the United States in 1930 to pursue her acting career. She is best known for her role as Roberta Alden on the NBC radio series The Baby Snooks Show, and for having a brief but memorable role in the 1932 movie Thirteen Women.
Unfortunately, Entwistle struggled to find work in Hollywood and became increasingly despondent over her lack of success. On September 16, 1932, the 24-year-old actress tragically took her own life by jumping off the ‘H’ in the Hollywoodland sign, becaming known as “Hollywood’s first suicide girl.” Her suicide note read: “I am afraid I am a coward. I am sorry for everything. If I had done this a long time ago it would have saved a lot of pain.”
Entwistle’s body was found the next day by a hiker, and her death was later ruled a suicide. Her remains were cremated and scattered at sea, making her one of the many tragic Hollywood tales of fame and fortune leading to premature death.
Lupe Velez (Actress, 1908–1944, 36 y.o.)
(84) Lupe Velez was a beloved Mexican-American actress and comedienne who tragically took her own life at the age of 36. Starting her career as a dancer in Mexico City, Velez made the transition to Hollywood in the 1920s, appearing in a number of silent films before making the jump to talkies.
Her most famous role was undoubtedly in The Girl from Mexico (1939), where she played a feisty Latina who moves to America and causes quite a stir.
Unfortunately, Velez suffered from depression and alcoholism for much of her life, and after several unsuccessful attempts, she eventually succeeded in taking her own life in 1944. She overdosed on barbiturates and was discovered by her maid, alongside a note which read: “I am tired of life. I am not giving you any trouble. I have always been a good daughter, sister, and friend. Forgive me and pray for my soul.”
Kushal Punjabi (Indian film actor, 1977–2019, 42 y.o.)
(85) Kushal Punjabi, the Indian film and TV actor, was one of the celebrities who tragically committed suicide in 2019. On December 26th 2019, he was found dead at his home in Pali Hills, Mumbai, after a long period of suffering from severe mental health issues such as depression and anxiety. According to his suicide note, his assets were distributed among his family members and child.
Kushal began his career as a dancer and model, and later achieved success in films such as Lakshya, Kaal, Salaam-e-Ishq, and Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal. He was also the host of the popular TV reality game show Zor Ka Jhatka: Total Wipeout in 2011.
Edward Platt (Actor, 1916–1974, 58 y.o.)
(86) Edward Platt was an English actor renowned for his role as “The Chief” in the 1960s television series Get Smart who tragically committed suicide at the age of 58 by cutting his wrists with a straight razor in his New York City apartment on March 20, 1974. Platt had been struggling with depression for some time and had attempted suicide several times prior to his successful attempt.
In a final interview before his death, Platt spoke about his feelings of “failure” and regret for not accomplishing more with his career. His wife discovered him lying in a pool of blood and called 911, but it was too late, and he was pronounced dead upon arrival at the hospital.
Kerry Von Erich (Professional wrestler, 1960–1993, 33 y.o.)
(87) Kerry Von Erich, renowned as The Modern Day Warrior and The Texas Tornado, was an American professional wrestler and grappler. Tragically, he was joined in the ring by four of his siblings: Mike, Chris, David and Jack. However, Mike and Chris both died by suicide, Mike at 23 and Chris at 21. David died aged 25 from a digestive system disorder, and Jack at 7 from an electric shock.
Kerry’s own life was marked by tragedy: he had his foot amputated due to an injury, became dependent on painkillers and other illegal drugs, and was charged with cocaine possession prior to his death. His financial difficulties, marital issues and prolonged grief over the deaths of his siblings ultimately led Kerry to take his own life at the age of 33, via a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest.
Stan Kirsch (Actor, 1968–2020, 51 y.o.)
(88) Stan Kirsch, famed for his role as Richie Ryan in Highlander: The Series, was found dead in his Los Angeles apartment on January 11th, 2020. He was 51 years old, and the cause of death was ruled as suicide by hanging.
Kirsch had a noteworthy career in Hollywood, with appearances in Friends, JAG, General Hospital, and The Young and the Restless. He was also an experienced screenwriter and director, with film credits such as A Dog’s Breakfast and Untogether. Recently, Kirsch had been teaching acting classes and running his own production company.
After his death, his wife, Kristyn Green, released a statement expressing her gratitude for the love and support she has received: “I want to thank everyone for the outpouring of love and support. I haven’t been able to respond to all the texts, calls, and emails – but I have read or listened to every single one of them. I feel surrounded by love and am forever grateful to each and every one of you.”
Carole Landis (Actress, 1918–1948, 29 y.o.)
(89) Carole Landis was an American film actress and one of the most popular pin-up girls of the 1940s who tragically took her own life at the age of 29 by overdosing on pills.
At the time, she had been in an on-again-off-again relationship with actor Rex Harrison for several years, and it is widely believed that her suicide was due to Harrison’s decision to end their relationship and marry another woman.
In her suicide note addressed to Harrison, Landis wrote: “I’m sorry darling… I just couldn’t help it.” Harrison was reportedly devastated by Landis’ death and never recovered from it, later saying that she was the love of his life.
Stefanie Sherk (Canadian actress, 1982–2019, 37 y.o.)
(90) Stefanie Sherk was a beloved Canadian actress, celebrity, and entertainer. She was best known for her roles in the films Valentine’s Day and Fabulous Hotel, as well as the television series #Hashtag: The Series. Despite being a two-time Oscar-nominated actress, Stefanie was troubled by depression and insomnia due to the loss of her grandmother and dog four months prior to her death.
On April 20, 2019, Sherk tragically took her own life by submerging her body in her pool with weights. She was found unconscious and eventually taken off life support eight days later.
Brenda Benet (Actress, 1945–1982, 36 y.o.)
(91) Brenda Benet was an American actress and model, best known for her role in the soap opera Days of Our Lives. Tragically, on April 14, 1982, Benet committed suicide by shooting herself in the head with a .38 caliber revolver at her home in Los Angeles, California.
The coroner’s report ruled her death a suicide and stated that she had been suffering from clinical depression. Benet’s husband, Michael Mishalow, said that she had been taking medication for her depression and had been seeing a therapist, and that she had been deeply affected by the death of her father who had passed away from a heart attack two weeks prior to her suicide.
A note found at the scene reportedly read: “I am sorry for all the pain I have caused. I just couldn’t go on any longer.”
Elizabeth Hartman (Actress, 1943–1987, 43 y.o.)
(92) Elizabeth Hartman was an American actress best known for her roles in The Fox and the Hound (1981), Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988), and A Patch of Blue (1965). She was highly acclaimed for her performance in the latter, which earned her an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress. Despite her success, Hartman had been struggling with clinical depression and alcoholism for years. On August 15, 1987, at the age of 43, she tragically ended her life by jumping from the ninth-floor balcony of her apartment building in Los Angeles.
Her husband discovered her body lying on the ground below the balcony, according to witnesses who had seen her standing on a chair before she jumped. The coroner’s office later ruled her death as a suicide. In a poignant suicide note, Hartman wrote: “I am truly sorry to those whom I love and who love me. Please forgive me. I can no longer continue hurting myself and everyone around me.”
L’Wren Scott (Fashion Designer, 1964–2014, 49 y.o.)
(93) L’Wren Scott was an American fashion designer who tragically took her own life in 2014 when she was found hanged in her New York City apartment. Despite a successful career, Scott was known to have suffered from depression for many years and was reportedly facing financial difficulties prior to her death. Her passing came as a shock to many, including her long-time partner Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones.
After her death, it was revealed that Scott had also been privately battling anorexia for an extended period of time. This heartbreaking discovery shed light on the struggles that those with mental illness can face. Scott’s death was a reminder of the importance of understanding and supporting those around us who may be struggling.
Mario Monicelli (Director, 1915–2010, 95 y.o.)
(94) Mario Monicelli was one of the most respected Italian film directors and screenwriters of the 20th century, who tragically took his own life by leaping from a window of the fifth floor of his home in Rome on 19 May 2010, at the age of 95.
Monicelli directed an impressive 100 films in a career that spanned six decades. His best-known works include The Great War (1959), I soliti ignoti (1958), La Grande Guerra (1959), L’Armata Brancaleone (1964), and Johnny Stecchino (1991).
His death came as a shock to the Italian film industry, as he was still actively working on several projects. Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi paid tribute to Monicelli, saying, “Mario Monicelli was one of the great masters of 20th-century cinema… He made us laugh, but he also helped us understand the tragedy of war.”
The exact cause of Monicelli’s suicide is still uncertain, with speculation surrounding both depression and financial difficulties. Nevertheless, one thing is clear. Mario Monicelli will be remembered as a great loss to the Italian film industry.
Lois Hamilton (Model & Actress, 1949–1987, 37 y.o.)
(95) Lois Hamilton was an iconic American model and actress, most famously known for her role as Major Anya Amasova in the James Bond film The Spy Who Loved Me (1977). Hamilton began modeling at the age of fourteen and quickly became one of the most successful models of the 1960s and 1970s. In addition to her modeling career, she also appeared in several films and television series.
Unfortunately, her career began to decline in the 1980s, and she struggled with addiction and depression. On March 25, 1987, at the age of thirty-seven, Hamilton was found dead of an overdose of alcohol and drugs. An autopsy revealed that she had died of “acute intoxication” from a mixture of alcohol, cocaine, and other drugs.
In the months leading up to her death, Hamilton had been arrested several times for DUI and was facing eviction from her apartment. Her friends reported that she had become increasingly depressed and was struggling to cope with her declining career.
Gia Allemand (Actress, 1983-2013, 29 y.o.)
(96) Gia Allemand was an American actress, model, and reality television contestant who was renowned for appearing in Maxim and being a cast member on two ABC reality shows: The Bachelor: On the Wings of Love and Bachelor Pad.
Tragically, on August 14, 2013, Allemand was rushed to University Hospital in New Orleans following an apparent suicide attempt. Despite being placed on life support, Allemand passed away two days later. The cause of death was officially ruled as suicide by hanging and it was likely to have been triggered by an argument with her boyfriend NBA player Ryan Anderson.
Iris Chang (Author & Journalist, 1968-2004, 36 y.o.)
(97) Iris Chang was an accomplished American writer and journalist, widely known for her bestselling book, The Rape of Nanking (1997). The book was a powerful account of the 1937 Nanjing Massacre, where Japanese troops ruthlessly murdered hundreds of thousands of Chinese civilians.
Chang began her career as a news assistant at The Wall Street Journal and went on to become a freelance writer, contributing to Newsweek, The New York Times, Smithsonian magazine, and other publications.
In 1996, Chang wrote an article for Ms. magazine about the rape of Chinese women by Japanese soldiers during the Nanking Massacre, which was the catalyst for her first book. Through her book, Chang managed to bring this horrific event to light, to a global audience.
Tragically, Chang took her own life at the age of 36. In a letter found after her death, she wrote that she had been battling depression and bipolar disorder for many years.
Sean O’Haire (Wrestler, 1971–2014, 43 y.o.)
(98) Sean O’Haire was an American professional wrestler, mixed martial artist, and kickboxer who retired from professional wrestling in 2006 to pursue a career in both mixed martial arts and kickboxing and later became a hairstylist.
Unfortunately, O’Haire had a well-documented history of severe drug addiction which resulted in multiple admissions to rehab over the course of six years and caused numerous setbacks in his career. This in turn led to him struggling with depression, mental distress and anxiety.
Tragically, on September 8, 2014, at the age of 43, Sean O’Haire took his own life by hanging himself from the bedpost, succumbing to his internal battle with extreme depression.
Mya-Lecia Naylor (Actress, 2002-2019, 16 y.o.)
(99) Mya-Lecia Naylor, the youngest celebrity on our list, was a beloved British actress, known for her roles in the series “Millie Inbetween” and “Almost Never.” Tragically, she passed away at the age of 16 on April 7, 2019, after taking her own life at her family home.
The coroner ruled her death as suicide by misadventure, suggesting that Naylor had not intended to die but rather was experimenting with self-harm. It is speculated that Naylor was struggling with the pressures of social media and comparison to other girls her age, leading her to take her own life.
Ellie Soutter (Snowboarder, 2000–2018, 18 y.o.)
(100) Ellie Soutter was a talented British Olympic snowboarder who tragically took her own life on her eighteenth birthday. Her body was discovered in her home in the French Alps, where she had been training for the Winter Olympics. The cause of death was later determined to be asphyxiation due to hanging.
Soutter had been struggling with depression and anxiety for some time before her death and had sought treatment for her mental health issues. She had also recently endured a number of injuries that hindered her performance in competitions. These factors likely played a role in her decision to end her life.
Christine Chubbuck (Television News Anchor, 1944-1974, 29 y.o.) – Bonus
(101) Christine Chubbuck was a respected American television news anchor who tragically took her own life live on air on July 15, 1974, while broadcasting from WXLT-TV in Sarasota, Florida. Chubbuck had been an anchor for several years and was known for her professional and serious demeanor. However, she had been struggling with depression due to personal and professional pressures, including a failed romantic relationship and dissatisfaction with her job.
On the morning of July 15, Chubbuck arrived at the station as usual and prepared for her morning broadcast. However, during the broadcast, she announced that she had a special report to deliver. She then pulled out a gun and shot herself in the head, live on air. The station quickly cut to commercial, but Chubbuck was pronounced dead on arrival at the hospital.
The suicide of Christine Chubbuck has generated much discussion and speculation in the years since. Some have suggested that it was the result of a larger societal problem, such as the pressures faced by women in the workplace or the stigma surrounding mental health issues. Others have argued that the tragedy was the result of the personal pressures experienced by Chubbuck herself.
Celebrities Who Committed Suicide: Last Words
Leo Tolstoy once said that “all happy families are alike, while each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” These words ring true for the victims of suicide, as every suicide case is unique and, more often than not, the reasons behind it remain unclear.
Any one suicide is a tragedy, but celebrity suicides are especially heartbreaking. After all, they are the people who achieved fame, fortune, and the admiration of those who look up to them. But even that was not enough to stop them from taking their own life.
On the other hand, all happy families are alike, indicating that no one who is content with their life would ever commit suicide. Happiness should be our primary objective when it comes to suicide prevention. And if ever we find ourselves feeling unhappy, we should remember that there are always solutions and we should never let our troubles become so severe that we contemplate self-harm.
In the end, happiness can be attained by almost anybody, as long as they have access to the necessary resources. Here at Optimal Happiness, we specialize in transforming difficult situations into something wonderful. So if you or someone you know are feeling down, suicidal, in need of advice, or just want to overall be happier, then don’t hesitate to get in touch. We will be more than happy to help.
 World Health Organization. (2014). Preventing suicide: A global imperative.