Tucson, AZ

Country singer Luke Bell suffered with bipolar disorder before dying in Tucson, Arizona

Brenna Temple

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Country singer Luke BellLaura E. Partain

In late August, famous country singer Luke Bell was found dead in Tucson where he'd traveled to perform. After weeks, the 32-year-old's autopsy report was finally released, indicating that he tragically overdosed on the notoriously deadly drug fentanyl.

The report says "This initially unidentified, 32-year-old man was reportedly found unresponsive by a passerby in a shaded area of a parking structure" and that "Drug paraphernalia was found at the scene.”

However, one medical condition, that cannot be detected by any means of scientific or medical testing, may have played a role in the lead up to Bell's death. According to other news media, the singer suffered from bipolar disorder, a mental illness that causes fluctuations in one's mood.

There are multiple types of bipolar disorder that vary in severity and cause extreme mood swings. Although many people live happy, productive lives with the disorder, it can cause shifts in one's mood that can make it markedly difficult to cope with life.

People who live with bipolar disorder are more likely to struggle with substance abuse, says the Addiction Center. These substances can exacerbate any bipolar symptoms, making it even more difficult to manage life,

Sudden life changes can trigger bipolar episodes. According to a statement written by Bell's family, the singer's bipolar disorder greatly worsened in 2015, after his father passed away.

"Unfortunately Luke suffered from the disease of mental illness, which progressed after his father’s death in 2015,” reads the statement.

“We have lost our beloved son, brother, and friend and we are heartbroken,” read the statement. “Luke had a gentle heart, a wanderer’s spirit, and a musical gift that he was fortunate to share with us and the world. We are so grateful to his friends and fans for embracing Luke and his music. We would like to thank all of Luke’s fans, friends, and family who have been sharing stories and photos of happy times with him.”

According to Bell's manager, Brian Buchanan, "Luke fought this as hard as he could, but the disease got the better of him."

“When he was beating the disease, he was the sweetest and most generous guy. He’s found peace now and there’s some comfort.”

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Brenna Temple is a professional freelance writer with more than 15 years of experience.

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