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Tina Turner Opens Up About Her Son's Suicide And The Impact It Had On Her

Tina Turner Opens Up About Her Son's Suicide And The Impact It Had On Her
(David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images)

Tina Turner recently opened up in a BBC interview about the tragic loss of her son, Craig Raymond Turner, who took his own life earlier in July.

He was 59-years-old.

The 78-year-old singer scattered her sons ashes off the coast of California and posted a photo of the moment she called, "My saddest moment as a mother."

His suicide was perplexing given the fact that he had landed a new job and was happy in a new relationship with his girlfriend.

"I still don't know what took him to the edge," Turner told BBC, "because at that stage he had said to me that he had never met a woman that he felt that way about."

"He was bringing her to meet me [for] his birthday in August. He had decorated his apartment, that I bought him years ago. He had gotten a new job with a prominent real estate company in California, [which] he was very happy with."

Despite the security of Craig's professional and personal life, Tina wondered if a sense of loneliness might have contributed to his decision to take his own life.

"I have no idea what pulled him down, except something that followed him with loneliness. I think it was something with being alone."

Reflecting on their past conversations, she did notice a subtle change.

"He was an introverted person, he was very shy, so I didn't know either, except now when I listen back to our last conversations, I notice a change."
"The last few times we talked, the conversations were different, and I didn't know that until after the suicide."

After Tina posted the heartbreaking photo of her saying her final goodbye, fans offered their prayers and condolences for her loss.

According to People, Craig was pronounced dead at 12:38 p.m. on July 3 in his home in Studio City, California, from a self-inflicted gun shot wound.

Tina was 18 when she gave birth to Craig, whose father was saxophonist Raymond Hill. The two met while he performed with Ike Turner's band, Kings of Rhythm.

Craig was adopted by Ike after he and Tina got married in 1962.

In a May 2005 interview with Oprah, Tina said that Craig – who "was a very emotional kid" – suffered extensive abuse from his adoptive father.

In response to the abuse taking a toll on her son, Tina recalled an incident in which a young Craig was concerned for his mother.

"He'd always look down in sadness. One day when Ike was fighting me, Craig knocked on the door and said, 'Mother, are you all right?' I thought, 'Oh, please, don't beat me at home.' I didn't want my children to hear."

Later, in the BBC interview, Tina discussed her newfound happiness after marrying Erwin Bach in 2013.

She later penned a memoir in an autobiography called, "My Love Story."

A slew of recent health concerns made Tina contemplate about her mortality.

"In Buddhism you accept the life and the death. I was ready, I just thought it was my time," she said, after suffering from a mild stroke, cancer, and kidney failure.

She moved to Switzerland where she found out about assisted suicide and signed up for it. "Death is not a problem for me, I really don't mind leaving."

But after Bach donated his kidney for her, she found a new lease on life. "I'm happier than I've ever been in my life," she said. "I'm happier than I ever thought that life would become for me."

A few days ago, Tina sustained an injury after taking a stumble, but her will to live remains intact.

"I did fall a couple of days ago and broke something so I was in a wheelchair and on crutches so maybe now I'm going through my sick period and I think that will take me through to my 90s. I'll be around for a while."

Earlier this year, the "What's Love Got To Do With It" singer launched a new musical, Tina - based on her life and career spanning 50 years – in London's West End.

A production for Broadway is being planned for a fall opening in 2019 at a theater to be announced.

H/T - People, Twitter, BBC, Oprah