On August 30, 42-year-old Kelly Plasker of the First Alert Forecast team with KCBD-TV in Lubbock, Texas, died by suicide.
Friends and family knew Plasker had been struggling with the loss of her 19-year-old son, Thomas, who died by suicide two years before.
“He was 19 years old, he was 2 weeks away from turning 20,” she said about losing him during an interview with KCBD-TV. “With somebody in the house, he still felt so alone that he made that choice.”
“So it’s very difficult for those of us who know him to comprehend why.”
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On Sunday morning, Plasker shared a long post on Facebook that detailed past grooming, abuse and manipulation she experienced at the hand of a band director when she was in high school. Her final lines are haunting.
“Thanks all I needed to get out there as my final confession for the sins I am responsible for adding to the cross,” she wrote.
“I love you my friends. My brain is broken and I cannot take it anymore.”
She died shortly after. Since her passing, her coworkers have been remembering her publicly for her kindness and vivacious personality.
“Her sudden death early this morning has broken our heart,” Kase Wilbanks, a KCBD anchor, said before a video tribute from Sunday. “In her three years on air, she showed us her passion for weather, which came through in her forecasts that kept us all safe and prepared for the day ahead.”
“She showed her heart and her love, for which we will all be thankful for. From the KCBD family to Kelly, we share our sympathies. We’re grateful for the time we shared with Kelly and the joy she shared with us.”
Sharon Maines, another KCBD news anchor, posted her tribute on social media.
“My friend (and co-worker) died this morning and I’m absolutely heartbroken,” she posted on Sunday. “Kelly Plasker had a smile as big as Texas and a heart of gold. She loved big and hurt deeply.”
“Her heart was broken from the suicide death of her son Thomas, and then her father’s sudden death just months later. Her grief was a daily struggle but she put on that smile and persevered. If any of you are struggling please please please talk to someone. There are so many broken hearts today. Prayers for Kelly’s two children and her family and all of us who loved her.”
The station’s vice president and general manager, Dan Jackson, also wrote of the group’s loss.
“We are deeply saddened by the tragic and sudden loss of KCBD weekend morning forecaster Kelly Plasker,” his statement shared on Plasker’s work Facebook page said. “Kelly was a dedicated member of the KCBD weather staff, well-liked by viewers, and admired by her co-workers. Our deepest sympathies go out to Kelly’s family in this time of great loss.”
“We would like to thank the many viewers who have reached out through our social media channels in kindness and support to honor Kelly’s memory. Grief counselors have been made available to all members of the KCBD family struggling with this heartbreaking news.”
If you or someone you know is struggling with thoughts of suicide, especially during such an unprecedented time, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is always available at 1-800-273-TALK.
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