The family of Rick “Zombie Boy” Genest has denied reports that the model, best known for appearing in Lady Gaga‘s 2011 “Born This Way” video, died last week as a result of suicide. “For us, the family and close entourage, we feel there’s too many inconsistencies around his death to rule it as a suicide, and for people to jump to conclusions that rapidly was disappointing,” Genest’s manager, Karim Leduc, told People.
Leduc confirmed that the 32 year-old actor/model died following a fall off a balcony in Montreal on Wednesday (Aug. 1), explaining that the balcony was located on the “backside of the building,” and was available just for his use. “The balcony from which he fell on the third floor was a very dangerous balcony,” Leduc told the magazine. “Just three weeks ago, I visited that balcony with him and was on it with him smoking a cigarette, as well. It’s a balcony that has very small rails/guards — an emergency/fire escape balcony – and he was leaning his back towards it like sitting on the ledge of the rail, and he fell from his backside onto the floor.”
The statement came after both the Canadian authorities and Gaga tied the death to a suspected suicide, though Gaga apologized on Saturday (Aug. 4) for initially writing that Genest’s “suicide… is beyond devastating.” Gaga has since deleted those tweets and now says she may have jumped to conclusions. “Out of respect for Rick’s family, Rick & his legacy I apologize if I spoke too soon as there was no witnesses or evidence to support any conclusion for the cause of his death,” she tweeted on Saturday night. “I in no way meant to draw an unjust conclusion. My deepest condolences to his entire family and friends.”
Leduc said Genest was not someone “we feel, would commit suicide; he’s not someone who would do something like that because he’s very thoughtful of others… Even though he was going through some very difficult, emotion[al] periods at the time, he hung on.” Because there were no witnesses ot Genest’s death, Leduc added, “It’s between him and God as to what happened.” In addition, Leduc said that on Wednesday morning he received a “beautiful” Facebook message from Genest in which the model said he appreciated their relationship.
Saying Genest didn’t have his phone on him that day, Leduc said he got no response from his client, who reportedly died around 5:00 p.m. that day after hanging out at his apartment with his girlfriend and telling her he was going out on the “balcony to have a cigarette.” Leduc added that at the time of his death Genest “was sober” and that his blood “came out completely clean.”
Out of respect for Rick’s family, Rick & his legacy I apologize if I spoke too soon as there was no witnesses or evidence to support any conclusion for the cause of his death. I in no way meant to draw an unjust conclusion My deepest condolences to his entire family and friends. pic.twitter.com/CJ9AdOJ22j
— Lady Gaga (@ladygaga) August 4, 2018