Tuesday, September 11, 2012
RIP Did You Know .... Gone Too Soon!
The Los Angeles County Coroner confirmed that actor Brad Renfro died from an accidental overdose of heroin. The cause of death was ruled "acute heroin/morphine intoxication," and the drugs were injected, according to the coroner's office. "The final manner of death has been ruled an accident," the coroner reported. The actor, who starred in The Client and Apt Pupil, had recently completed a movie with Winona Ryder and Billy Bob Thornton.
Film director Joel Schumacher discovered Renfro at age 12 and cast him in the 1994 John Grisham movie The Client (which also starred Susan Sarandon and Tommy Lee Jones). The following year, PEOPLE named the young screen hopeful one of its "Top 30 Under 30." The actor's other credits include Tom and Huck, Ghost World and Deuces Wild.
But Renfro had a troubled life off-screen, going back to 1997 when he was sentenced to two years of probation after he tried to steal a yacht. In 2005, Renfro was busted again, this time in a police sting in which he was charged with a felony count of attempting to possess heroin. In a separate incident, he was charged with a misdemeanor count of driving under the influence and two counts of driving with a suspended license.
In January 2006, he entered a rehab program. At the time, Renfro's attorney, Richard Kaplan, told the Los Angeles Times that his client was doing well and "looks forward to doing whatever is necessary to take care of his personal and legal issues." Renfro eventually plead guilty to the heroin charge and was sentenced to three years' probation. Most recently, in June 2007 Renfro was found to have violated his probation by not enrolling in a long-term drug treatment program. A judge warned him that if he violated probation two more times, he could be sentence to a live-in rehab program or to jail time. He is survived by a son identified as Y Renfro who now lives in Japan.
** I created this weekly tribute dedicated to the stars who for one reason or another did not receive the send off through the media that they deserved. Please join me every Tuesday as I continue to celebrate 'LIFE'. People will live on as long as we remember them. Thank you Brad Renfro for your contribution to this world and through your artistry, you will live on forever. kk **