The husband of fashion designer Kate Spade, who took her own life Tuesday, says his wife was getting help for anxiety and depression.
Kate Spade was seeing doctors and taking medicine for her disease, Andy Spade said in a statement released Wednesday.
Andy Spade said he had conversed with his wife the night before she was found dead in her Manhattan apartment and she "sounded happy."
He said her death was a "complete shock."
The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in New York officially determined Spade's cause of death was hanging and the manner of death was suicide, it said Thursday morning.
Kate Spade had anxiety and depression for years, her husband said. She had been going to doctors and taking medicine for her disease for five years, he wrote.
He said they had been living apart, but he was in touch -- either visiting with her or speaking with her -- every day.
"There was no indication and no warning that she would do this," he said. "It was a complete shock. And it clearly wasn't her. There were personal demons she was battling."
Andy Spade said he and his wife had decided to take a break and had lived in separate residences for 10 months. But they were committed to co-parenting their daughter, so they often ate meals together and vacationed as a family, he said.
"We were best friends trying to work through our problems in the best way we knew how," he said. "We were together for 35 years. We loved each other very much and simply needed a break."
Kate Spade had no alcohol, business or substance abuse problems, he said.
Andy Spade called his wife the kindest person he knew and said he cannot fathom life without her.
Kate Spade, who created an iconic, accessible handbag line that bridged Main Street and high-end fashion, took her own life, according to New York Police Department sources. Police responded to her apartment at 10:10 a.m. Tuesday after Spade was found by her housekeeper, Chief of Detectives Dermot Shea said.
A suicide note was found at the scene, he said. Spade, 55, addressed her daughter in the note, according to two New York Police Department sources. Spade's husband also was referenced in the note, according to one of the sources.
Andy Spade said he was appalled that "a private message to my daughter" had been shared with the media.
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