Michelle Rounds, the ex-wife of comedian Rosie O’Donnell who battled mental illness during her marriage and after their bitter break-up, was found dead at her home on Monday in an apparent suicide. She was 46 years old.
“I am saddened to hear about this terrible tragedy,” O’Donnell told TMZ. “Mental illness is a very serious issue affecting many families. My thoughts and prayers go out to Michelle’s family, her wife and their child.”
O’Donnell and Rounds began dating in 201, married in June 2012 and adopted their 4-year-old daughter, Dakota, while they were together. They finalized their divorce in March 2016, with the former co-host of “The View” reportedly obtaining sole custody of the child.
In her 2015 divorce filing, O’Donnell described her marriage with Rounds as “an irretrievably broken relationship” and revealed that the couple had signed a prenuptial agreement.
In a statement, Rounds’ mother encouraged others to help those suffering from mental illness or suicidal thoughts.
“If anyone would like to give to the National Suicide Prevention it would be greatly appreciated,” she said. “There are so many out there in this world that have demons that they think suicide is the only way out.”
Rounds was hospitalized in 2015 after an apparent overdose on pills. Police were dispatched to a Doubletree hotel in upstate New York, where they reportedly found Rounds and transported her to the hospital. Because of medical confidentiality rules, names and medical conditions were not released to the public.
Reports were conflicted as to whether Rounds had attempted to commit suicide, with Entertainment Tonight quoting a source who claimed that “[i]t was simply a bad reaction. If she was trying to commit suicide, they would have held her at the hospital.”
Rounds lived with her current wife, Krista Monteleone, and their adopted daughter in Windermere, Florida, at the time of her death.