Per a report issued by London coroner Paul Knapman and obtained by the BBC, the famed British fashion designer was "overwhelmed with grief" at his mother's death just days before and had taken cocaine. He also had antianxiety medication, sleeping pills and tranquilizers in his system, all of which likely played a key role in his decision to kill himself at his London flat Feb. 11.
"[McQueen] had a history of self-harm and, no doubt fueled by cocaine, he resorted to desperate measures to end his life," Knapman wrote Wednesday, adding that "the balance of his mind was disturbed."
The coroner's report also quoted the 40-year-old designer's psychiatrist, Dr. Stephen Pereira, as saying McQueen had been diagnosed with mixed anxiety and depressive disorder and had insomnia, but failed to keep appointments to talk about his condition.
Pereira also said McQueen had attempted suicide by overdosing on drugs on two previous occasions in 2009, and after losing his mother "felt that was the one link that had gone from his life and there was very little to live for."
(Originally published April 28, 2010, at 7:55 a.m. PT)
Alexander McQueen will always be missed by his famous fans.