Reality TV didn't agree with the late Russell Armstrong. On the first season of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, Taylor Armstrong's husband — who was found dead at age 47 of suicide on Monday — often came off as controlling, neglectful and obsessed with his work.
"It really bothered him," his business parter John Indelicato at IT Trading, told Us Weekly in an interview.
Although wife Taylor, 40, was enthusiastic about joining the cast of the Bravo series, Indelicato (who knew Armstrong for about 3 years) was "surprised" that his friend was signing on for the reality show. "He was a very quiet person," Indelicato told Us. "He didn't share anything that was going on in his life…If there were any problems, he wasn't one to sit there and talk about them."
And, to Indelicato's knowledge, claims that Armstrong was physically and verbally abusive are off the mark. "He's not the guy that's beating his wife. He loved his family and his wife. I really liked him. His face always had a smile on it."
Indelicato told Us he saw his friend just two weeks ago. "He was fine. I didn't see any depression… I still can't believe he's no longer here."
Armstrong also called Indelicato in mid-July, when Taylor filed for divorce. "He told me 'It's over, it's not just going to work. The show gets in the way…it affects my life.' It was his opinion that the show broke up the marriage."
"They tried very hard to make it work," he said of the couple, who shared daughter Kennedy, 5. "They went to counseling, they went away together, went away on vacations."
"He thought [the show] had a real negative affect on their marriage," Indelicato added. "It was like the straw that broke the camel's back."
In addition to Kennedy, Russell leaves behind two older sons from previous relationships. "I am so shocked that there was no suicide note," Indelicato said. "He loved his children. He was very close to his kids. His weekends were dedicated to his children and his wife."
"He loved his family…He was not the bad guy that Bravo made him out to be. He was a good guy. He was a good loving man."