The Young and the Restless' Kristoff St. John (Neil Winters) faced a parent's worst nightmare on Sunday, November 23, when his 24-year-old son, Julian St. John, ended his life following a battle with mental illness. And today, the actor released a statement on the horrifying loss he and his family have suffered.
"It is with deep sorrow and overwhelming heartbreak that I regretfully share the news that my beautiful, talented, 24 year old son, Julian 'Jewels' St. John, passed away on November 23," says Kristoff via an official statement to Entertainment Tonight. "He suffered from schizophrenia for many years and tragically lost his life just a few days before Thanksgiving, and two weeks before his 25th birthday. His legacy will live on in our hearts and for those that continue to suffer from this insidious disease. My ex-wife Mia, Julian's sisters Paris and Lola and I, are all devastated beyond words and belief. We mourn the loss of our son, brother, artist poet, and a giant of a young man. A beautiful life gone much too soon. Julian will forever be remembered as he now takes flight with Angels."
An announcement of Julian's passing was originally made by Julian's mother, Mia St. John.
"On November 23rd, Kristoff St. John and I lost our beautiful son, Julian St. John. Our son was the light of our lives, an artist with a beautiful mind and spirit. He fought long and hard against an illness for which there is no cure," Mia shared. "Unfortunately the pain became too great for him and I dare not say he lost the battle -- he simply chose to set himself free."
Julian St. John was described as complex, eccentric, and flamboyant. He suffered from severe depression for most of his life and battled addiction, but he found art as a way to tell his story of despair and triumph. His artwork was showcased in a one-man show at the Laguna Gallery of Contemporary Art.
Mia St. John vowed to continue being an advocate for mental health issues.
"They may not find a cure in my lifetime, but we can try and prevent the loss of another beautiful soul," she wrote.
Funeral services for Julian will be held on December 5, the day that he would have turned 25. A reception will follow and will include an art exhibit from his final collection.
To view Julian's art, visit theartofjulian.com.