Celebrities Speaking Up About Grief: Volume 13

Books, Movies, and Music / Books, Movies, and Music : Litsa Williams


If you are a WYG regular (and we hope you are), you probably know we love love love when celebrities open up about grief.  No, it is not because we take some twisted pleasure in the pain of the rich and famous. We love that celebrities talking about grief shines a light on a universal human experience that can feel hidden in the shadows.  It reminds us that we are not alone. Sometimes it even inspires us to share the emotions that we have been bottling up, holding in, or stuffing away.

So this week we bring you three new celebrities talking about grief.  But before we do, a quick request: One of our fabulous grief friends over at the Chesapeake Life Center nominated us as a best Baltimore-based health and wellness blog. Woot woot! We think it would be super to see a grief blog win and, let’s be honest, we think it would be even more super if that grief blog was What’s Your Grief. So, before you read today’s post, do us a solid and click on over to the Baltimore Sun Mobbie page and vote for WYG in the health and wellness section.  If you are a WYG superfan, you can even vote for us once a day between now and November 12th.

Done voting?  Thanks, you’re the best.  We hate asking for things, but we non-runners here at WYG just couldn’t let one of those running blogs win without putting up a good fight.

Okay, refocus. Celebrities talking about grief, here we go:

Frank Turner on the Death of Josh Burdette

If you live in the Baltimore-DC area and go to see live music, even occassionally, you probably know the 9:30 Club. If you are like me and have many a fond memory there, dating back to high school, you probably remember Josh Burdette. He was hard to miss: 6’3″ 300lb guy covered with tattoos and piercings. He was a fixture at the club, one of those people you couldn’t imagine not being there. In 2013, Josh Burdette died by suicide, a loss that rippled through not just his friends and family, but the community strangers who knew him as a constant presence at the 9:30 Club. This year, Frank Turner released a new album and, on it, he included his ‘Song to Josh.’ This is a song he wrote for Josh, then performed and recorded at the 9:30 Club. Here is the video of that show, that includes Turner sharing memories of Josh and singing a song that articulates so much of the pain that comes with suicide loss.  If your cubicle neighbor is offended by the f-bomb, skip his introduction and start the video at 1 minute 50 seconds when the song starts.

Liam Neeson with Anderson Cooper on Grief

You may know that Anderson Cooper has gone through significant loss in his life and, perhaps because of that, he takes many opportunities to talk about grief. Needless to say, we love this. We shared a link to this video back in July, but we weren’t able to embed it and the link seemed to have some problems.  So, this is a take two for this video with Anderson Cooper interviewing Liam Neeson on the death of his wife, Natasha Richardson.