Rebecca Gayheart is opening up about the tragic car accident she was involved in back in 2001, in which a nine-year-old boy died.
The actress was driving in Los Angeles and accidentally struck a young boy named Jorge Cruz Jr., who was crossing the street.
“I had a very terrible accident happen. A 9-year-old child died. And, you know, everything changed from that, and, I still have trouble talking about it,” Rebecca said on the podcast The Only One in the Room.
“I just didn’t want to live after that accident. That’s what it came down to. I couldn’t handle it at all. So I spent about a year just trying to kill myself, basically, by doing every self-destructive thing a person can do,” she said.
Rebecca pleaded no contest to vehicular manslaughter and was sentence to “probation, a one-year suspension of her license, a $2,800 fine, and 750 hours of community service,” according to Yahoo. The boy’s parents filed a wrongful death lawsuit, which she settled out of court.
“I just didn’t understand; I didn’t understand any of it, like, I had led, you know, sort of a charmed life up until then, even though I grew up dirt poor,” Rebecca said. “It just turned my world upside down and I lost faith in everything, like, I questioned God, like, ‘Why me? Why Jorge?’”
Rebecca still has a hard time when she thinks about the accident.
“I struggle with the ‘Why?’ still,” she said. “I still replay it in my head of, ‘Had I stopped at the gas station, maybe I wouldn’t have been on that street.’ You know, those things never go away. They stay with you forever and I did not cope very well after. Listen, I just didn’t want to live after that accident.”
“Today, I am able to ponder those questions and still realize that I deserve to be happy,” she concluded. “That I am meant to be on this planet and that I have a purpose and I’m making, living amends for that, even though it was an accident.”
If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or text Crisis Text Line at 741-741.
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