Sad News: Country Singer Mindy McCready Dead at 37
Country singer Mindy McCready committed suicide on Sunday, February 17. RIP, Mindy; you’ll be missed.
Sad news today, Bettys: Troubled country singer Mindy McCready passed away this weekend, and even sadder, the cause of death was suicide. She was 37 years old.
On Sunday, sheriff’s deputies for Cleburne County in Arkansas responded to a report of gunshots at 3:31pm; upon investigation, they found McCready on the front porch of her home in Heber Springs. Said the sheriff’s department in a statement, “Ms. McCready was pronounced dead at the scene from what appears to be a single self-inflicted gunshot wound. At this time family members have been notified of the incident. Ms. McCready will be transported to the Arkansas State Crime Lab for an autopsy and the matter will be fully investigated.” She leaves behind two sons: Zander, age 6, and Zayne, 10 months.
McCready was born on November 30, 1975 in Fort Myers, Florida, and began singing at the age of three. She released her debut album, Ten Thousand Angels, in 1996 when she was just 21 years old. The album sold 2 million copies; the single “Guys Do It All the Time” went to the top of the charts. However, successive albums failed to reach the heights her debut did, and she was dropped by her record label in 2002. Trouble with the law soon followed, including an arrest for prescription drug fraud, a DUI, a drug overdose, several suicide attempts, and jail time. She also faced off in court with her ex, William McKnight, in 2002; McKnight, an aspiring country singer himself, had assaulted her in May of 2005. They reconciled, however, and their son, Zander, was born in 2006.
McCready was arrested again in 2007 for violating her probation; then, in 2008, it came out that she had allegedly had an affair with baseball star Roger Clemens, whom she met when she was 15. Though Clemens’ camp denied that the relationship was anything more than that of a “close family friend,” McCready described it as being sexual in nature. The singer checked into rehab in July of that year, but backslid quickly.
She attempted to jumpstart her career again in 2010 with the album I’m Still Here; by 2011, she had lost custody of her son, Zander. She went missing with the five-year-old, though she told Access Hollywood after they were found, “I did not steal my child, as it would be impossible for me to kidnap what already belongs to me.” She battled McKnight for custody, then had a second son. Zayne, with record producer David Wilson in 2012.
Sadly, Wilson died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound on January 13, 2013. In the wake of the tragedy, a judge ordered McCready to be committed to a treatment facility for both mental health and alcohol issues; her sons were placed in foster care. When McCready was found on Sunday, she was on her porch in the same place where Wilson had been found just a month prior.
McCready may have lived a troubled life, but it’s always sad when fame chews its stars up and spits them out. At least Zander and Zayne weren’t home at the time of the incident—thank heaven for small things.
RIP, Mindy; you’ll be missed.
Lucia Peters is BettyConfidential’s senior editor.