Sophie Gradon's mum hits back at Love Island boss over the star's suicide

Sophie Gradon's mum hits back at Love Island boss over the star's suicide


Sophie Gradon’s mum has hit back at an ITV boss who claimed it was ‘strange’ to link the reality star’s suicide to Love Island.

CEO Dame Carolyn McCall said last week that the public shouldn’t ‘simplify’ links between Sophie and Mike Thalassitis’ deaths and the dating show.

Deborah Gradon called Carolyn’s comments ‘principally evil’ and said they ‘belittled’ and ‘trivialised’ the death of Sophie, who hanged herself last summer aged 32.

In a heart-wrenching open letter to Carolyn for The Sun, Deborah wrote: ‘To lose an only, adored, cherished child to illness or accident is one form of loss. To lose that child to suicide is torturous.

‘In my beautiful darling daughter’s own words: “I sold my soul to ITV”.’

She added: ‘As a mother yourself, I hope your hypocrisy and haughtily placed remarks sit well with your conscience.’

Deborah added that Sophie, who struggled with her mental health before appearing on Love Island, was ‘desperately unhappy’ on the show and made four requests to leave.

She said her daughter’s anxiety was at an ‘unprecedented level’ by the time she left, and claimed Sophie was given a ‘piteous’ ten-minute Skype chat with a counsellor after asking for help. has contacted a Love Island rep for comment.

Sophie was found dead at her parents’ home in Northumberland on 20 June, 2018 after consuming cocaine and alcohol.

Her body was found by boyfriend Aaron Armstrong and his brother Ryan, who had driven to the house after Aaron grew concerned about Sophie’s lack of social media activity.

Deborah previously shared her condolences with the family of Mike Thalassitis, who took his own life aged 26 back in March.

She tweeted: ‘To #MikeThalassitis and his bereft Family. Thinking of you, wishing you hope in the midst of sorrow, comfort in the midst of pain. Love in your darkest hours.

‘I’m walking the same road as the inconsolable Mother of #SophieGradon.’

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