Rosie O’Donnell‘s ex-wife Michelle Rounds died at her home in Florida on Monday, September 11, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office confirms to Us Weekly. She was 46.
“I am saddened to hear about this terrible tragedy,” O’Donnell, 55, said in a statement to Us on Friday, September 15. “Mental illness is a very serious issue affecting many families. My thoughts and prayers go out to Michelle’s family, her wife Krista and their child.”
The Emmy-winning comedian and Rounds began dating in 2011. They married in a private ceremony in New York City in June 2012 and adopted a daughter, Dakota, in January 2013. The former couple split in November 2014 and finalized their divorce in March 2016. O’Donnell was awarded full custody of Dakota, now 4.
According to TMZ, which was first to report the news, Rounds died of an apparent suicide. Her mother posted a statement on social media: “If anyone would like to give to the National Suicide Prevention it would also be greatly appreciated. There are so many out there in this world that have demons that they think suicide is the only way out.”
Rounds’ obituary described her as a “very loving, giving and caring individual who would help anyone in their time of need. Michelle had an affection for animals and was always rooting for the ‘underdog.’ Michelle will be remembered for her beautiful smile and beautiful long flowing red hair; her signature some would say. The love she had for her family and friends was unconditional.” A private memorial service will be held by Round’s family.
Prior to Rounds, O’Donnell was married to Kelli Carpenter. They share four children: Parker, 22, Chelsea, 19, Blake, 17, and Vivienne, 14.