In Memoriam: Cheslie Kryst

by Elysian Magazine

Content Warning – The contents of this article discuss depression, anxiety, and suicide.

On Jan. 30, 2022, New York police officers and paramedics responded to a 911 call at 7:13 a.m. to Cheslie’s midtown Manhattan apartment building on 42nd Street. She was pronounced dead at the scene. The New York City Office of the Chief Medical Examiner confirmed to CNN that she died by suicide and had multiple blunt impact injuries. Detective Martin Brown confirmed the cause of death.

“In devastation and great sorrow, we share the passing of our beloved Cheslie,” her family said in a statement. “Her great light was one that inspired others around the world with her beauty and strength. She cared, she loved, she laughed, and she shined.” Cheslie’s mother, April Simpkins, said in a statement that she has “never known a pain as deep as this. Cheslie led both a public and a private life. In her private life, she was dealing with high functioning depression, which she hid from everyone — including me, her closest confidant.”

Scott Erik, 41, and Miles Bartelle, 30, told The U.S. Sun they saw the police outside the building on Sunday and described their shock at hearing of Cheslie’s death. “You never know what is happening behind closed doors. Even if people seem fine, they might not be,” Erik said. “This is a really easy city to get lost in. Check in with your people.”

Just hours before she took her life, she posted this on social media: “May this day bring you rest and peace.” With it was a photo she had taken of herself. Her eyes were beautifully, heavily made-up. The false lashes were like a mask. Behind them were eyes that had no sparkle — soft, hushed, deadened eyes. What a tragedy that Cheslie took her own life. What a greater tragedy, still, that not one person could see what lay beneath her mask.


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