Melanie Panayiotou


George Michael's family is in mourning once again.

On Christmas—the anniversary of the superstar's death—younger sister Melanie Panayiotou passed away. The 55-year-old was found in her home after police were called to the North London residence, E! News can confirm. At this time, her death is not being treated as suspicious, according to the officials. 

"We can confirm that very tragically Melanie has passed away suddenly," the family's lawyer John Reid said in a statement to E!. "We would simply ask that the family's privacy be respected at this very sad time."

Three years prior, in 2016, the Wham! singer—born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou—was found dead in his Oxfordshire home by boyfriend Fadi Fawaz. "Its a xmas i will never forget finding your partner dead peacefully in bed first thing in the morning.." the hairstylist tweeted at the time. "I will never stop missing you xx." It was later revealed that the 53-year-old died of natural causes, with the coroner noting suffered from a dilated cardiomyopathy with myocarditis and fatty liver.

Following his tragic passing, fans and friends—including Mariah Careyand Chris Martin—took to social media to pay tribute to the music icon. 

"I am in deep shock," Elton John wrote alongside a photo of them together. "I have lost a beloved friend—the kindest, most generous soul and a brilliant artist. My heart goes out to his family and all of his fans. #RIP."

Three months later, close friends and family gathered to say goodbye to Michael during a small, private ceremony. 

"George Michael's family would like to thank his fans across the world for their many messages of love and support," his rep told E! News in a statement at the time. "We ask that the family's wish for privacy be respected so that they can continue to live their lives privately, away from any media intrusion."

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