Nephew of Venus and Serena Williams dies by suicide at 21, reports say

Francis Akhalbey February 16, 2022
Venus and Serena Williams' 21-year-old nephew died by suicide -- Photo Credit: Edwin Martinez1

Alphonse Williams, the 21-year-old nephew of Venus and Serena Williams, died by suicide on February 3, The Sun reported. Alphonse’s mother, Sabrina, is the half-sister of the tennis superstars by way of their father. The 57-year-old is one of five children from Richard Williams’ first marriage to Betty Johnson.

But Sabrina said she hasn’t been in contact with her father and step-sisters. She said her deceased son suffered from bipolar disorder and was also diagnosed with Peyronie’s disease, which is a “condition where scar tissue causes the penis to curve or lose length or girth.”

Sabrina revealed her son attempted taking his life a couple of years ago. She said his recent diagnosis also greatly affected his mental health.

“When my son attempted [to end] his life two and a half years ago, I asked God, save his life and give me a little bit more time, please,” she told the news outlet. “And God answered my prayers. He did. He gave me two and a half years more than I expected. I knew he was on loan and God called in that loan.”

Sabrina said she believed Alphonse died after overdosing on unknown medication. The coroner is, however, yet to release his autopsy results. “He was crying last Monday, hysterical crying. The week before, the doctor confirmed what he already knew, that he had Peyronie’s,” Sabrina said.

“He had started back at high school, he was going into his fourth semester of computer engineering and was regularly seeing a counselor.

“It’s going to take six to eight weeks for the coroner to find out what he bought. We know he’s taken some strong medicines which would have made him fall asleep, he would have gone into respiratory distress, but wouldn’t have known. He just never woke up.”

Besides his mother, Alphonse is survived by his 23-year-old brother. “My older son is still sending texts to his phone, talking about sports, he doesn’t want to let go, that’s part of his grieving process,” she said.

Sabrina added: “I read online for hours. One of the top symptoms is depression. I’m not denying that he died with mental health problems, but I truly believe that if my son got some help, somebody was able to talk to him, I think he would still be here.

“He had no idea that this thing was making him more depressed. When he got the news, he just couldn’t handle it, how many of us could have handled it at that age?

“I had my own mental health issues, but it wasn’t until my late 30s that it was sorted out, when I was quitting jobs and jeopardizing myself, screwing up, I was just so suicidal.”

Arrangements are currently being made for Alphonse’s funeral, and his family said mourners are expected to attend the ceremony in Batman or DC comic t-shirts to pay homage to him being a fan, The Sun reported. His family also said they plan to go to his favorite vegan restaurant after the funeral.

“After that, it’s going to be a mission to reach out to help other people, it will be his legacy, I miss my baby,” Sabrina said. “That’s my life goal. I have an unconditional desire to help people.”

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: February 16, 2022


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