4 Months After One Death, Another Tragedy

Melinda Coleman, mother of Daisy Coleman, takes her own life, says advocacy group
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 7, 2020 11:38 AM CST
4 Months After Daughter's Death, Another Tragedy
A screen shot of Daisy Coleman, from the Netflix trailer of Audrie & Daisy.   (YouTube)

Her daughter took her own life four months ago at the age of 23 after enduring an unwanted national spotlight, and now Melinda Coleman has died by apparent suicide herself at the age of 58, reports the Kansas City Star. Prior to the death of daughter Daisy Coleman, Melinda Coleman had lost her husband and teenage son to separate car crashes. Coverage:

  • Daisy's story: Daisy Coleman is one of the subjects of the 2016 Netflix documentary Audrie & Daisy. When she was 14, Daisy alleged that an older classmate raped her, then left her intoxicated outside her home in sub-freezing temperatures in only a T-shirt. The alleged assailant was not prosecuted, and Daisy and her family endured harassment and abuse in the town of Maryville, Missouri, in the wake of the allegations, per People.

  • Victims' group: Before her death, Daisy founded the group SafeBAE (Before Anyone Else), which is dedicated to preventing sexual abuse among middle and high school students. It was that group that announced Melinda's death Sunday night. "We are in shock and disbelief to share with our SafeBAE family, that we lost Melinda Coleman to suicide," says its Instagram post, per ETOnline. "The bottomless grief of losing her husband, Tristan, and Daisy was more than she could face most days."
  • Other deaths: As referenced in the Instagram post, Melinda's husband, Dr. Wayne Coleman, was killed in a car crash in 2007. Daisy's 19-year-old brother, Tristan, was killed in a car crash in 2018. He was driving home after helping Daisy move to Colorado, notes the Star. Melinda was in the car, too, but survived.
  • Her struggle: In announcing her daughter's death in August, People notes that Melinda wrote: "I think she had to make it seem like I could live without her. I can’t. I wish I could have taken the pain from her! She never recovered from what those boys did to her and it’s just not fair. My baby girl is gone."
  • Support: Melinda was remembered as veterinarian, a devoted mom, and a bodybuilder by the SafeBAE posts. "There are no words for our sadness, only that if you are struggling with trauma or depression, you are not alone," one reads. "There is always help and support available. We are with you." The group's site is here.
(More Daisy Coleman stories.)

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