If you haven’t already heard, Rizzoli & Isles‘ Lee Thompson Young was found dead this morning, after having taken his own life. It’s terribly sad, shocking news.
I found out after having received the statement from Janet Tamaro, executive producer of the show, in my inbox: We are beyond heartbroken at the loss of this sweet, gentle, good-hearted, intelligent man. He was truly a member of our family. Lee will be cherished and remembered by all who knew and loved him, both on- and offscreen, for his positive energy, infectious smile and soulful grace.
I can’t say this one didn’t shake me up a bit, given how much I enjoyed seeing him on this show and others. Yes, I remember him as the famous Jett Jackson. And from that point on, I would always pick him out of a lineup when he’d make random guest appearances, including in the penultimate season of Scrubs, which I happened to rewatch last week. I thoroughly enjoyed him on Rizzoli as well, chuckling when he was first introduced as the famous Jett Jackson vomited at the sight of yet another grisly crime.
But what else stings for me is that this particular actor was from my small hometown of Irmo, SC. While I never knew him, I’m seeing old teachers and classmates light up my Facebook feed with fondness and old memories. Clearly, this man struck a chord with those who knew him as an individual and as an actor, and he’ll be truly missed.
So long, Lee. You were too young, but you will be remembered by all those who spent time with you, on or off the screen.
*image courtesy of TNT