Toddlers & Tiaras star Kailia Posey took her own life, says her heartbroken mother
The child star had just turned 16
The family of Kailia Posey, who rose to fame after appearing on reality TV show Toddlers and Tiaras, have confirmed that she took her own life.
On Tuesday, Marca Posey Gatterman announced the tragic news that her daughter had passed away.
She wrote on Facebook: "I don’t have words or any thoughts. A beautiful baby girl is gone. Please give us privacy as we mourn the loss of Kailia. My baby forever."
Gatterman later confirmed in a statement to TMZ that her daughter "made the rash decision to end her earthly life."
Posey's body was found in Washington on Monday (May 2). She had celebrated her 16th birthday on April 19.
Her family have now set up the Kailia Posey Teen Crisis Intervention Fund to help "students in crisis."
The teen was best known for her starring role in Toddlers and Tiaras, which followed young children and their parents as they competed in beauty pageants from 2009 to 2013. But she will also be remembered for a viral GIF from the programme, when she was filmed grinning mischievously at the camera.
In recent years, Kailia kept up with the pageant circuit as a teen and even announced on Instagram in January that she was going to compete as Miss Washington Teen USA in February.
She also later became interested in body contortion and launched an Instagram account solely for that hobby.
In their statement, her family said: "She won countless crowns & trophies after competing on the pageant circuit her entire life.
"Her highly acclaimed talent as a contortionist had already led to professional touring job offers, and she had recently been selected to be a cheerleader at her high school next fall."
If you or anyone you know is struggling with mental health or suicidal thoughts you can get help and advice at the following places:
- Samaritans - 116 123
- Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) - 0800 58 58 58, or use webchat
- Shout Crisis Text Line – Text "SHOUT" to 85258
- NHS - 111
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