Caribbean 360. com
CALIFORNIA, United States, Friday August 23, 2013 – On the face of it, 29-year-old Lee Thompson Young had everything to live for: a successful acting career that delivered fame and fortune, a loving family and lots of good friends.
So when the star of TNT’s “Rizzoli & Isles” was found dead on Monday in his North Hollywood apartment with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head, police had their work cut out to determine the reason why.To add to the investigators’ quandary, while a gun was recovered at the scene, there was no sign of a suicide note.
“It’s still a mystery. Evidently he was a clean-cut kid who didn’t use alcohol and had no reported drug problem,” a law enforcement source was quoted as telling the New York Daily News.
Lawmen discovered Young’s body after he failed to show up as scheduled on the set of “Rizzoli & Isles” and police were called.
The hit Boston police drama immediately suspended production for a week as news of Young’s tragic passing spread.
“Everyone at ‘Rizzoli & Isles’ is devastated by the news of the passing of Lee Thompson Young. We are beyond heartbroken at the loss of this sweet, gentle, good-hearted, intelligent man,” TNT, Warner Bros. and executive producer Janet Tamaro said in a joint statement.
“He was truly a member of our family. Lee will be cherished and remembered by all who knew and loved him, both on- and off-screen, for his positive energy, infectious smile and soulful grace. We send our deepest condolences and thoughts to his family, to his friends and, most especially, to his beloved mother,” the statement said.
A statement from the actor’s longtime manager Jonathan Baruch said: “It is with great sadness that I announce that Lee Thompson Young tragically took his own life.”
“Lee was more than just a brilliant young actor. He was a wonderful and gentle soul who will be truly missed,” Baruch said. “We ask that you please respect the privacy of his family and friends as this very difficult time.”
Meanwhile, a close friend who has known Young since he was a teenager reportedly told the Daily News: “He was ill. You don’t just do this.”
The friend was quoted as saying that Young practiced Yoruba, a faith based predominantly in Nigeria and southern Benin, and that he took a trip to a Yoruba village with his mother several months ago for a “beautiful ceremony.”
“He was very close to his mother and sister,” the friend said. “He had a great support network. He had his local priest and lots of good friends who were like family, including the ‘Rizzoli’ cast.”
The friend was also quoted as saying that a report linking Young’s depression to his faith was “a gross mischaracterization.”
A better explanation, the friend said, is that Young was drawn to his faith because he yearned for enlightenment and may have been “too sensitive” for this world.
“He wouldn’t even play characters that were bad. He was all about good,” the friend said.
(Editor’s note: The reference to Yoruba as a “faith” may be misleading. The Yoruba are a people inhabiting and originating from the west coast of Africa. Many Caribbean people have Yoruba roots.) . Caribbean360.