Chelsea Handler Remembers Late Big Brother Who Died at Age 22 in Touching Post

Chelsea Handler
Cindy Ord/Getty Images

Chelsea Handler wrote a touching tribute on Tuesday, July 11, about her late big brother, Chet Handler, who died at age 22 decades ago.

The comedian, 42, shared a throwback photo of her sibling explaining that Chet, the oldest of six kids, passed away 33 years ago this month.

“We were never 6 again. Only 5. The number was never the right number again,” Handler wrote. “But, because of that day, I learned how to live and love and laugh and to: Show up Stand up Love up Argue Fight Make up Show up again. Go to bat for people. Tell them you love them. Defend your friends. Stand up for yourself. Give away the things you have in excess. Give away the things you love the most. This is the only chance we get. Make it count. Live a little.”

Chet died after he fell off a cliff in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. She opened up about the family tragedy during an interview on The Rosie Show in February 2012.

“I don’t know what my family dynamic would be with my brothers and sisters if that hadn’t happened because we’re all so tight because of it,” she said at the time. “I don’t know that we would have been this close if everything was intact, no, I think you obviously grow together and bond together when you go through something like that.”

Months later, she added to Katie Couric: “You just don’t ever recover from that … To see your father wake up crying and cry in front of people all the time about his first son being dead, to see that you’re like…’Stop it you’re supposed to protect us.’ So I think in my way I just got this really tough exterior. Because I’m like, ‘OK, I gotta get my act together because these two people [my mom and dad] are kinda falling apart.'”

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