Country singer Mindy McCready was found dead by apparent suicide on her front porch Sunday, the victim of a single, self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head, according to officials in Arkansas. She was 37.
Her death comes a little over a month after David Wilson, her partner and the father of her younger son, died of a gunshot wound to the head on that same porch in Heber Springs, Ark.
“Just got a call from Mindy McCready’s best friend that she shot and killed herself this evening,” NBC’s Andrea Canning wrote on Twitter on Sunday night. “My heart breaks for her two boys. RIP.” Canning had recently interviewed McCready for “Dateline.”
In that interview, McCready, who was not a suspect, was asked by Canning if she’d killed Wilson. “Oh, my God, no,” the singer replied. “Oh, my God, no. He was my life. We were each other’s life.”
According to a sheriff’s statement obtained by TMZ, “Officers arrived on the scene at 3:58 PM [Sunday] and discovered the body of 37 year old Melinda Gayle McCready on the front porch of the residence ... . Ms. McCready was pronounced dead at the scene from what appears to be a single self-inflicted gunshot wound.”
McCready had been ordered into rehab by a judge on Feb. 6 after her father asked the court to intervene but appears to have been released two days later.
She leaves behind two children, Zander, 6, and Zayne, 9 months. The boys were put into foster care when their mom was ordered into rehab.
Ex-boyfriend Billy McKnight, Zander’s father, talked to the “Today” show Monday.
“As sad as it is, it didn’t come as a major shock because she’s been battling demons for so long,” said McKnight, who knew McCready for 15 years. “I was around her when she attempted suicide twice, so I knew it was in her. I feel for her mother and her family and especially my son. But I can’t say that it shocked me.”
McKnight and McCready had been battling for custody of Zander for years, a battle that included Mindy fleeing across state lines with the boy until she was ultimately found hiding in a closet with him in Arkansas. McKnight said he would like to keep the brothers in touch with each other if custody of Zayne goes to McCready’s mother, who lives about an hour and a half away from him in Florida.
McCready is the fifth alum of Dr. Drew Pinsky’s “Celebrity Rehab” to die since appearing on the show, and the third from the show’s third season, according to Billboard. Alice in Chains bassist Mike Starr and “Real World” alum Joey Kovar each overdosed, in 2011 and 2012, respectively. “Grease” actor Jeff Conaway and Rodney G. King, from the second season, died in 2011 and 2012, respectively, with drugs contributing to King’s death.
“Although I have not treated her for a few years, I had reached out to her recently upon hearing about the apparent suicide of her boyfriend and father of her younger children,” Pinsky said in a statement to BuzzFeed. “She was devastated. Although she was fearful of stigma and ridicule, she agreed with me that she needed to make her health and safety a priority. Unfortunately it seems that Mindy did not sustain her treatment.”
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