Editor’s note: If you are in an emergency in the United States or Canada, please call 911. You can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline on 1-800-273-8255. Youth can call the Kids Help Phone on 1-800-668-6868.
The family of Canadian pop singer Kelly Fraser, who died last week, revealed that her cause of death was suicide.
“She was fiercely open with her fans in the hopes that sharing her personal struggles might help them know they were not alone,” Fraser’s mother, Theresa Angoo, and her siblings said in a statement to Canadian news website Global News.
They added that Fraser died by suicide in Winnipeg, Manitoba, on Dec. 24 after suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, known commonly as PTSD, “as a result of childhood traumas, racism and persistent cyberbullying.”
“She was actively seeking help and spoke openly about her personal challenges online and through her journey,” her family said.
Other than their statement, the family said they want privacy.
“We are still in complete shock and our hearts bleed for our sister. Let us celebrate Kelly’s generosity, honesty, passion, and love of life,” Jessie Aputi Fraser said, according to NNSL.
Fraser was age 26.
Fraser grew up in Sanikiluaq, Nunavut, in Canada and was recently living in Winnipeg, Manitoba. She released her debut album, “Isuma,” in 2014 before releasing a sophomore album, “Sedna,” in 2017. She was later was nominated for indigenous music album of the year at Canada’s Juno music awards.
The video of her version of “Diamonds” by Rihanna was widely viewed on YouTube and elsewhere.
“[Fraser] was extremely passionate about trying to improve conditions for Inuit people,” said Thor Simonsen, Fraser’s friend and producer, according to the New York Daily News.
“Kelly was a ball of energy and passion,” Simonsen told the Globe and Mail. “She loved her people more than anything else and her entire being was centered around trying to improve living conditions for Inuit and First Nations. She was such a giving person.”
He said that she aspired to worldwide fame.
“She wanted to be on the charts next to Rihanna and the pop stars, but she was also very rooted in her culture,” Simonsen said. “She had such a love of Inuit drum dancing, throat singing, and traditional songs … She wanted to express the stories and share the struggles that Inuit go through, making it palatable for an international audience.”
In a statement on Twitter, family members stated that they don’t want to talk about “what happened to Kelly,” and they asked people to respect their privacy, reported The Globe and Mail.
Fraser’s friends said that supporters can donate via GoFundMe page to help her family cover funeral costs.
“This is a fundraiser on behalf of Jessie, Max and Rachel, sisters of Kelly Fraser (With their permission),” the page said. “As you might know there are many hidden costs associated with the passing of a loved one. The sisters are gathering in Winnipeg and will need help over the next weeks to come. We anticipate they will need help with food, transportation, basic needs, and other costs associated with a memorial service, etc.”
If you are in an emergency in the United States or Canada, please call 911. You can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline on 1-800-273-8255. Youth can call the Kids Help Phone on 1-800-668-6868.
In the United Kingdom, call Samaritans at 116-123, Papyrus at 0800-068-41-41, or Childline at 0800-1111.
In Australia, the suicide prevention hotline at Lifeline is 13-11-14. You can also visit the Lifeline website at lifeline.org.au. Youth can contact the Kids Helpline by phoning 1-800-551-800 or visiting headspace.org.au/yarn-safe
If you are in an emergency in India, call Befrienders India – National Association at +91-33-2474-4704.