Regina King’s son has died by suicide. Regina, 51, confirmed in a statement to PEOPLE that Ian Alexander Jr, 26 – her son with ex-husband Ian Alexander Sr – had taken his own life.
She wrote: “Our family is devastated at the deepest level by the loss of Ian. He is such a bright light who cared so deeply about the happiness of others. Our family asks for respectful consideration during this private time. Thank you.“
Ian Jr had followed his music executive father into the business by becoming a DJ and Regina previously revealed her only child had taught her about “unconditional love”.
She said: “You don’t know what unconditional love is. You may say you do, but if you don’t have a child, you don’t know what that is. When you experience it, it’s the most fulfilling [thing] ever.”
And, last year, on Regina’s 50th birthday, Ian Jr took to social media to praise his mother.
He wrote: “Happy birthday to my co, so extremely proud of you and inspired by your love, artistry, and gangsta! To be able to watch you take this lifetime by its neck and make it yours is something i will forever be grateful for.
“But to have you as my mother is the greatest gift I could ask for. To be all that you are while always having the time to be there, love and support me unconditionally is truly remarkable. The whole marvel universe ain’t got s— on you, your the real superhero! Love you mom! This day and everyday YO DAY!! “
The pair also got matching tattoos reading “unconditional love” after taking Kabbalah classes together.
Regina previously explained: “He said, let’s choose three [designs] each and not tell each other which ones they are and whichever one is matching, that’s the one we’re going to get tattooed — and we both chose unconditional love.“
We pray for the family at this difficult time.