One of the stories to erupt in the wake of singer Mindy McCready’s death from an apparent suicide is the tragic loss of life for former cast members of Celebrity Rehab. McCready’s passing marks the 5th death in 2 years for those that have sought assistance via the VH1 TV show hosted by Dr. Drew Pinsky.
McCready became the third of nine cast members from Season 3 alone to have passed as Alice in Chains‘ Mike Starr and Real World vet Joey Kovar previously lost their battles with addiction in unrelated drug overdoses. Jeff Conaway of Grease fame passed after a lifetime of prescription pill addictions while Rodney King’s death was ruled an accidental drowning although alcohol, cocaine, marijuana and PCP found in his system were contributing factors. Conaway and King both appeared on Season 2.
Late 80’s and early 90’s hit-maker Richard Marx didn’t mince words in regards to his opinion of Dr. Drew via Twitter:
There were a total of 43 cast members for Celebrity Rehab through its 5th and final season. BuzzFeed reached out to Dr. Drew and he offered this official statement:
I am deeply saddened by this awful news. My heart goes out to Mindy’s family and children. She is a lovely woman who will be missed by many. 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. 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.
Mental health issues can be life threatening and need to be treated with the same intensity and resources as any other dangerous potentially life threatening medical condition. Treatment is effective. If someone you know is suffering please be sure he or she gets help and maintains treatment.
In the following emotionally charged clip via VH1 from Season 3, Mindy sings a song she penned while in jail and dedicated it to her fellow cast mates.
Do you agree with Marx’s viewpoint that Dr. Drew, via his work with Celebrity Rehab, is guilty of exploitation?