Tyler Gwozdz — a former contestant on last year’s The Bachelorette — died from “opioid toxicity” from what is believed to be heroin, according to Page Six. After suffering from an apparent overdose on January 13 at an apartment in Boca Raton, Gwozdz passed away on January 22.
On Thursday, the Palm Beach County Medical Examiner’s office confirmed the cause of death.
On the night of January 13, the Boca Raton Sheriff’s Department responded to a 911 call about Gwozdz. The caller, who is reported to be Gwozdz’s girlfriend, reportedly broke into a locked bathroom to find Gwozdz unresponsive. She can be heard screaming on the call, telling the 29-year-old to wake up. She also told the dispatcher that she was trying to find Narcan — a drug that is used to treat Opioid overdose — because she thought he had used heroin sometime before his death.
Upon arrival, authorities found Gwozdz still unresponsive. They rushed him to the hospital, where he passed away over a week later while in intensive care.
According to the Medical Examiner’s report, a “powdery white substance” and a syringe were found on the vanity in Gwozdz’s apartment. The report also says that he may have had a history of substance abuse.
“Given this information and a lack of admission specimens for testing his death is being classified as Opioid Toxicity (heroin),” the medical examiner’s report read, as per the Daily News.
The report noted that it is possible the “offending agent” was something other than heroin. However, the document also confirmed that Opioid Toxicity is the best current classification, stating that the medical examiners will evaluate the substance if more information becomes available and “if needed the cause of death [will be] amended.”
Gwozdz’s family set up the Tyler A. Gwozdz Foundation after his death. The charity is meant to “increase local education” about addiction and “support and finance” recovery programs — as well as help to reduce the burden that addiction can place on families and friends. The family set up a GoFundMe page for the foundation.
“The devastation and heartbreak caused by addiction is unfortunately becoming a reality for too many families across the United States as the epidemic of this disease continues to spread.”
Gwozdz was on Season 15 of The Bachelorette, where he competed to win the heart of Hannah Brown. He left the show after three weeks, but ABC and the show’s producers did not provide an explanation for his sudden exit. However, they did release a statement shortly after Gwozdz’s death.