Model Rick "Zombie Boy" Genest was found dead in his Montreal apartment on August 1, 2018, police sources told CBC Radio Canada.
According to authorities, Genest, who's famously known for his extensive tattoo collection, passed away at about 5 pm.
The 32-year-old claimed the Guinness World Record for the most insect tattoos on his body (a total of 176) and for the most human bone tattoos (139), including one of a brain covering the top of his head and a skull across his entire face.
After capturing the public's attention for his unique look, Genest was recruited to walk the runway for major fashion brands in Paris and Berlin. He also appeared in magazines including GQ, Vanity Fair, and Vogue Hommes.
"The zombie concept is also often used as a metaphor for runaway consumerism. Rebelling from this notion is the very meaning of punk," he explained in an interview with Wonderland magazine in 2012.
"The origins of the zombie creature came about from stories of people being buried alive in times of plagues and such crises; that would come out the other side "˜transformed'. Zombies, to many, represent a pervasive xenophobia. As in my life, I was often out-casted, hated or misunderstood," the model continued.
He also appeared in Lady Gaga's 2011 music video for her hit song "Born This Way." When the Grammy Award-winning singer heard of Genest's passing, she took to Twitter to say that his death was "beyond devastating."
Now, more than a year after his August 2018 passing, the official cause of death of Rick “Zombie Boy” Genest has finally been revealed. Genest’s death was officially ruled an accident by a Canadian coroner on Monday, despite initial speculation that he had died by suicide.
“It has been very difficult for the family and for us, his close ones,” Karim Leduc, Genest’s former manager, told reporters Monday in the wake of the coroner’s report. “For us to be able to move on with the knowledge that the world now has the same side of the story that we have is a relief. Nonetheless, it stirs up all our emotions that we have gone through and it is very painful.”
In her report, coroner Mélissa Gagnon ruled the death of Genest was likely caused by an accidental fall, and not suicide.
Toxicological analysis at the Forensic Science and Forensic Laboratory in Montreal showed that Mr. Genest was heavily intoxicated by alcohol, with a rate of 234 mg / dL, almost three times the legal limit for driving. The presence of cannabis was also detected in his blood.
It seems as though he fell off a third-storey balcony in the Plateau Mont-Royal apartment. Genest, who struggled with mental health issues in the past, was not in the frame of mind to kill himself, according to the report. Gagnon said everything she gathered in speaking to witnesses indicates Genest had no intention of taking his life.