The tattoo-covered model known to the world as “Zombie Boy” has passed away this week at the age 32. CBC is reporting that the man allegedly took his own life in Montreal on Wednesday evening. His body was found in his home.
After starring in Lady Gaga’s music video for “Born This Way,” the model, whose real name is Rick Genest, rose to fame for his unique look. He was covered with tattoos from head to toe and would ten make appearances at tattoo conventions around the world. His full-body skeleton tattoos earned him his nickname as he appeared as a living corpse and when he was hired to walk the runway for Thierry Mugler, his career catapulted.
Lady Gaga reacted to her close friend’s death on Twitter as she wrote, “The suicide friend Rick Genest, Zombie Boy is beyond devastating. We have to work harder to change the culture, bring Mental Health to the forefront and erase the stigma that we can’t talk about it. If you are suffering, call a friend or family today. We must save each other.”
She continued by calling on everybody to end the stigma associated with mental health. “Science tells us that it takes 21 days to form a habit, if you are suffering from Mental Health issue I beckon for today to be your first day or a continuation the work you’ve been doing. Reach out if you’re in pain, and if you know someone who is, reach out to them too,” wrote Gaga.
RIP Zombie Boy, Rick Genest.