(New York, NY) — Kate Spade’s older sister says the designer’s depression went untreated for years. Reta Saffo told “The Kansas City Star” that Spade was “self-medicating with alcohol,” and resisted family efforts to get her into a hospital treatment program.
Saffo said the 55-year-old was concerned that such news would harm the “happy-go-lucky” Kate Spade brand. She said her sister was “fixated” on the 2014 suicide of comedian Robin Williams, who also took his own life by hanging. Spade’s housekeeper found the fashion mogul dead Tuesday in her Park Avenue Apartment bedroom, a scarf around her neck, hanging from a doorknob and suicide note by her side. Her husband and business partner Andrew Spade was apparently home when her body was discovered by a housekeeper.
According to a published report, the suicide note mentioned her daughter. The “New York Post” says Spade urged her 13-year-old child, Frances Beatrix Spade, not to blame herself for her death.
Other reports claim that she committed suicide because her husband was seeking a divorce. TMZ cites law enforcement sources who say Spade was despondent and did not want her 24-year marriage to end. The report says Kate and Andrew Spade had separated, and he was living in a nearby apartment.
Actor David Spade payed tribute to his late sister-in-law. The actor shared a photo on Instagram of the two of them together and said he still cannot believe she is gone. He also encouraged everyone to hang on in the “rough world.”
She started her fashion brand with his brother/her husband Andrew in 1994.