Cheslie Kryst Kept Depression Hidden

Mother says no one knew until just before the former Miss USA died
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 2, 2022 7:15 PM CST
Cheslie Kryst Kept Depression Hidden
Cheslie Kryst attends an event in 2020.   (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)

Cheslie Kryst, the former Miss USA and TV correspondent who died last weekend, had been struggling with depression, her mother said Wednesday. Kryst's death was a suicide, April Simpkins said. "In her private life, she was dealing with high-functioning depression which she hid from everyone—including me, her closest confidant—until very shortly before her death," Simpkins said in a statement, per TMZ. She said the family is asking for donations to Dress for Success instead of flowers. The statement included the number for the National Suicide Hotline, 800-273-8255, and encouraged anyone having suicidal thoughts to call.

New York City officials have confirmed the cause of death as suicide, per E! News. "I have never known a pain as deep as this," Simpkins said. "I am forever changed." Kryst's grandfather also spoke about the pain his family is enduring. "To be extinguished so fast is just devastating," Gary Simpkins said, per the New York Daily News. "So hard to imagine one minute they're here and one minute they're not." Her grandfather added, "She was such a fantastic person." (Read more celebrity death stories.)

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