Daytime superstar Kristoff St. John passed away suddenly on Super Bowl Sunday, leaving his family, friends, loved ones, co-stars, and fans heartbroken at the tragic loss. In 1991, St. John originated the character Neil Winters on The Young and the Restless, and he made his mark on the soap world and beyond during his too-short life.
Last week, Kristoff’s ex-wife, boxer Mia St. John — who is the mother of the actor’s late son Julian, and oldest daughter Paris — sat down in a teary interview with Dr. Oz to discuss his final days. Mia described the struggle that both she and Kristoff faced after losing their son Julian in 2014 to suicide, and she said that Kristoff’s death has made the battle even more difficult.
Mia said, “It was our biggest nightmare. And he never ever could recover from the guilt. He felt guilty; he felt responsible. Even though the facility was found guilty of neglect and falsifying records. And I kept trying to tell him over and over again that it was not his fault.”
As a father, Mia said that while Kristoff was the disciplinarian, he couldn’t wear that hat for very long. He loved to joke around and to be funny with the kids. During Mia’s boxing career, she said that Kristoff stepped up to play the role of both father and mother for some time. Despite his sometimes turbulent relationship with Julian, Mia declared that Kristoff was a great father.
Join my fight 4 better #MentalHealth care????The system failed my son @TheArtofJulian & his father @kristoffstjohn1 Facilities get away with NEGLECT & FALSIFYING records????I want ACCOUNTABILITY! - Mia Talks to Dr. Oz About His Last Days https://t.co/reUfLrZlBy— Mia St. John (@MiaStJohnBoxer) February 23, 2019
According to Mia, for Kristoff, Julian’s suicide was a failure. He took on the loss as his fault, even though the facility was found at fault. He cried daily over losing Julian. Unfortunately, after many years of sobriety, Kristoff fell off the wagon, and never got himself back on. Many people believe that Kristoff died from a broken heart.
Despite his outward confidence, Mia said that Kristoff — who was diagnosed as bi-polar — did not necessarily feel that confidence inside. She described the vivacious actor as lonely and insecure at the end of the day, and she said that Kristoff would often stay in his house, isolated from everybody else, despite his infectious public personality. His outward personality drew people to him like a magnet.
Mia said that Kristoff often threatened to take his own life, and that shortly before his death, Kristoff had been committed involuntarily to a psychiatric facility. While their attorney wanted to commit Kristoff for two weeks, he was only kept for four days before being discharged. According to Mia, Kristoff was still suicidal when they released him from the facility.
Ultimately, Mia said that she is still here fighting — and will continue to fight — for mental health awareness in the wake of losing her son and ex-husband after their battles.
The Inquisitr recently reported that in late April, Y&R will air a storyline for Kristoff and his character, Neil.
If you or someone you know is in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741. For readers outside the U.S., visit Suicide.org or Befrienders Worldwide for international resources you can use to find help.