Fans have missed Lisa Vanderpump on social media in recent weeks, but the reason for the Bravo star’s absence may have just come to light: Per the Daily Mail, her brother, Mark Vanderpump, was found dead at his home in Gloucestershire, England, on April 30. He was 59. The cause of death is reportedly a drug overdose.
In a statement to the UK outlet, Vanerpump expressed both grief and surprise. “This has come as a shock to us all,” she said. “My brother and I had connected the day before this tragedy and I was completely unprepared for this. He was my only sibling and I am shocked and saddened by his passing. I am trying to be supportive to his two young sons that he has left behind, and help them get through this tragedy. We appreciate your consideration in this private and extremely difficult family time.”
Mark, who worked as a DJ, appeared to hold his sister in high regard, posting pictures of the pair on social media with affectionate captions and retweeting news about her TV series, The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and Vanderpump Rules. The siblings occasionally vacationed together, and Mark reportedly frequented his sister’s Los Angeles area restaurants.
— Lisa Vanderpump (@LisaVanderpump) May 11, 2015
At this time, it is not known whether Mark’s suspected drug overdose was accidental or intentional. According to the Daily Mail, though, a UK family member who wished to remain anonymous said of Vanderpump’s recently divorced brother, “After 22 years of marriage, Mark was living a very colorful life until it all sadly went wrong.”
Other details about Mark’s life that have emerged since his death are alleged legal troubles and his appearance on a UK documentary called Gold Diggers and Proud. (To be clear, Mark was not a “gold digger” — an ITV logline for the show quoted him as saying he was “happy to spoil pretty women with gifts.”)
— Mark Vanderpump (@Markvanderpump) January 5, 2015
Vanderpump’s representatives have not yet responded to numerous outlets’ requests for comment. Our deepest condolences go out to the family during this heartbreaking time.