Vince Neil an American musician’s daughter Skylar died of cancer after several months of pain at the age of four in August 1995. He then threw himself into a self-immolation phase nasty than anything he had ever done previously.
Vince Neil’s Confrontation With His Daughter’s Health
The singer knew it was the worst thing he would ever have to tackle with, but it came during a legal fight following his split with his band “Motley Crue” and also a distressing breakup from his ex-wife, Skylar’s mother. He found himself angry and suicidal and hiding behind alcohol and drugs after the tragedy
Neil also wrote about the tragedy in the memoir of the band’s 2001 “The Dirt”, the movie version of which released in 2019. He had just taken part in a celebrity motor race at the Long Beach Grand Prix when he received a phone call from his current wife Sharise saying Skylar had been hospitalized. Doctors had thought she suffered a burst appendix, but the truth was more dreadful.
“Instead, they saw that a cancerous tumor around her abdomen had exploded, spreading cancer all through her body,”
Neil recalled, adding that he’d been terrified when he saw her attached to all those tubes and machines.
Doctors found that the cancer was nasty than expected and life threating to fully remove after each surgery. Most of the parts of Skylar’s vital organs were extracted in a bid to contain the disease till finally, the tumor itself was in a condition to be extracted.
“weighed six and a half pounds,” he remembered.
“That’s how much Skylar had weighed when she was born. I had never seen anything like it before: it was the face of evil. It lay spread out in a metal pan, a nacreous mess of shit.
“It doesn’t seem like much, but little things can make a whole lot of difference when you’re a kid in the hospital,” he said in his 2010 memoir Tattoos & Tequila.
While he was unable to cope with the personal torment.
“I would stay at the children’s hospital as long as they’d let me, then I’d drive straight to Moonshadows in Malibu and get liquored up with the regulars until I couldn’t remember my own name,” he said in 2001.
“I knew it was wrong to be drinking at this time, but it was the only way I could keep from going completely crazy.”
He remembered returning to the hospital with a giant packed panda, only to be a clash with the news that Skylar’s left kidney had also infected.
“That’s all she’s got left,” he told the doctor.
It meant another surgery, her sixth which compelled Neil to ask how much more she could take. The answer was not much. Skylar fell into a coma after that surgery.
The Impact of Neil Daughter Skylar’s Death
He knew the imminent end was near, and that only lead his drinking worse.
“Her little body just couldn’t take anymore,” he said
“When your body starts to fall apart, there’s no one who can fix the machine. They can only keep it running for a little while longer. And sometimes I wonder whether I did the right thing by keeping Skylar running for so long, keeping her in such pain for five months; one-tenth of her entire life.”
“I cut the most pathetic figure: a father who just couldn’t deal with the pain of knowing that soon he would have to undergo the worst tragedy that a parent can bear – having to bury his own daughter,” he remembered.
“I would have been willing to lay down my own life if it would have helped. I had never thought anything like that before – not about my wives, not about my parents, not about anybody. Perhaps that was why I was trying to kill myself with drink so that somehow I could martyr myself and exchange my suffering for hers.”
In The Dirt, Neil wrote about the pain of attending the funeral of his daughter. But in Tattoos & Tequila, he confessed he hadn’t been able to bring himself to be there.
At the same time, he recalled that he added pills to his drinking as he blamed himself for Skylar’s death.
“I was confused and fucked up,” he noted.
How Neil Faced His Grief
However a number of trials at rehab failed, he finally confronts his feelings after scoring a personal best at golf and questioning why he felt so good about it, provided that prevailing circumstances.
“It occurred to me that maybe I really did need a better way to work through my emotions,” he said.
He went through grief counseling instead of trying rehab for substance abuse again. That helped him deal with his issues.
“I had made it through to the other side,” he said.
“The first thing I did when I got out of rehab was to visit Skylar’s grave for the first time. Instead of bursting into tears, I was able to smile as I talked with her and remembered all the things we used to laugh and joke about.”
In the consecutive years, Neil who has two older children from a previous marriage found the Skylar Neil Foundation to raise funds for children with cancer. Till date, it has generated millions of dollars to help with treatment and research.