Following the one-year anniversary of designer Kate Spade’s suicide, her brother-in-law, actor and comedian David Spade, has opened up about the tragic event, revealing that he doesn’t believe that she would have still wanted to do it it “five minutes later.”
“I feel like Katy wouldn’t have done it, five minutes later. But these things happen and there’s no going back,” David said in a New York Times profile published Monday.
Kate was found dead in her Manhattan apartment in June 2018, having hung herself. Following her death, her husband suggested that she’d long struggled with “personal demons” like depression and anxiety, but there was “no indication or warning” that she would take her own life.
Speaking to The Times, David recalled that the late designer, who became a member of his family after she married his brother Andy Spade, was “always so funny.”
“Katy was so funny,” he said. “I don’t know if agoraphobic is the word, but she didn’t like to mingle a lot; she’d have people at her house and she was always so funny.”
David also reflected on the loss of other friends and family. Comedian Brody Stevens, who died by suicide in February, often performed as an opening act for David's shows. His stepfather died by suicide when he was only 15 years old, and late comedian Chris Farley, who Spade worked closely with for years, died from an overdose in 1997.
“People just started going right and left, and I would sit and stare at a wall,” he told the paper before explaining how he came to accept it. “I just said, 'O.K., I guess I’ll cross my fingers that it doesn’t happen to everyone.' And more people would go.”
After Kate death, David said that losing her had been “very tough” on their family, Page Six reports. Her father, Earl F. Brosnahan Jr., died hours before her funeral was slated to begin, with his family reporting that, at the age of 89, Brosnahan’s health had already begun to fail and the death of his daughter left him “heartbroken.”
Following Kate Spade’s death — as well as chef and author Anthony Bourdain’s suicide days later — calls to suicide hotlines reportedly saw a huge spike, with the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline reporting a 25 percent increase and the Suicide Awareness Voices of Education (SAVE) reporting similar numbers.
In honor of his sister-in-law’s memory, David donated $100,000 to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) last year to help raise awareness.
“More people suffer from mental health issues than we may realize but no one should ever feel ashamed to reach out for support,” he said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE.
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