The truth behind reality runner-up Kat McKenzie's sudden death

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The sudden death of Kat McKenzie, 25, created widespread shock and sadness on both sides of the Atlantic.

Kat, an attractive and bubbly former pole dancer from Guildford, was runner-up on reality TV show Paris Hilton’s British Best Friend, broadcast on ITV2 earlier this year.

As police launched an investigation into the death, Paris Hilton broke off from filming in Dubai to say: ‘I am so sad my friend Kat passed away. She was such a beautiful, funny and charismatic woman.’

Within hours, there was speculation that Kat’s death was a result of exhaustion, stress or a mystery illness.

Viewers will recall Kat’s sudden admission into hospital during the taping of the show due to ill health ­­– contestants and viewers were surprised when she was allowed to return.

Now has investigated and can exclusively reveal the sad truth behind Kat’s death. A source who was in her year at school has revealed that she took an overdose on the evening of Thursday 2 July.

Kat’s suicide came to light the following morning and was met with disbelief by friends and family.

‘We just couldn’t believe Kat would do something like this,’ says the friend. ‘She was such
a happy, upbeat and energetic person. Her family’s devastated because there must have been some deep-seated problems that she kept to herself and no one knew about.’

The rise of female depression

The biggest rise in attempted suicide has been among women aged 16 to 24 as they struggle to cope with the pressures of modern living in Britain, according to the World Health Organisation.

Self-harming has increased by 80 per cent among this group since 2000.  The Mental Health Foundation’s Tea And Talk, launching on 10 October, aims to raise awareness about this. Visit www.mentalhealth.org.uk for more info.

See the full story about Paris Hilton and Kat McKenzie in Now magazine dated 20 July 2009 – out now!