The Tragic Death Of Edie Sedgwick

Edie Sedgwick was an actress and model who became Andy Warhol's muse and was called the "Girl of the Year" in 1965 after being featured in many of Warhol's short films. Sadly, the beauty's life was tragically cut short at just 28 years old.

Sedgwick was born into a wealthy family in 1943. The Sedgwicks originated from England, and many of the family members attended elite educational institutions. Despite their wealth, Sedgwick had a troubled childhood and suffered abuse at the hands of her father, Francis Sedgwick, who was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, as reported by ATI. He didn't hide his affairs from his children, and when a young Sedgwick caught him with a mistress, he insisted that it was all in her imagination and had a doctor give her tranquilizers.

In her early teens, Sedgwick suffered from eating disorders, perhaps as a way to cope with her troubled home life. Her father sent her to a mental facility, but she further deteriorated and was sent to a different hospital to recover, according to Biography. To add to that, she found out that she was pregnant, but decided to have an abortion, as she didn't deem herself psychologically fit to care for a baby. In 1964, Sedgwick moved from California to New York to follow her dreams of becoming a model.

Edie Sedgwick's popularity and downward spiral

It was in 1965 when Edie Sedgwick and Andy Warhol crossed paths. The two became inseparable and attended parties together, and soon, Sedgwick was starring in several of Warhol's short films. During that time, she also took a combination of drugs and was eventually treated at a hospital for drug addiction. It was then that she learned she was carrying Bob Dylan's child, with who she had an affair. However, her doctors had allegedly aborted the baby against her wishes. Sedgwick's brother, Jonathan, claimed that his sister told him she was in love with the musician. "I could tell the difference in her, just from her voice. She sounded so joyful instead of sad. It was later on she told me she'd fallen in love with Bob Dylan," he said (via the Independent). Soon after, Dylan married Sara Lownds.

Sedgwick and Warhol's friendship had also deteriorated. She was depressed and couldn't kick her drug habit. She was in and out of hospitals, which just seemed to worsen her condition. In one of her stays in a mental institution, she met another patient named Michael Post. The two married in 1971, and according to ATI, Sedgwick was able to remain sober from drugs and alcohol for a brief time after her marriage. It didn't last, though, as she was later prescribed pain medication for an illness. That would kickstart her drug habit once again.

Edie Sedgwick's death

Edie Sedgwick's doctor prescribed her barbiturates for physical pain, but Sedgwick was able to procure more than the prescribed amount by saying that she lost her medication. She was soon back to her old habit of taking drugs and combining them with alcohol, per Warhol Stars. In November 1971, Sedgwick attended a fashion show at the Santa Barbara Museum. She went to an afterparty where she continued drinking. Her husband, Michael Post, eventually picked her up from the party, and they headed home. Sedgwick took her prescription medication before she went to bed.

The next day, on November 16, Post woke up at around 7:30 a.m. and found his wife already dead. According to Sedgwick's autopsy report, she died of acute barbiturate intoxication. The New York Times published an obituary on November 22, which, in part, read, "Tall, slim and striking in thigh-high dresses and shoulder-length earrings, Edie Sedgwick accompanied Mr. Warhol to hundreds of parties during her brief reign as his 'superstar' in the mid-nineteen-sixties."