Who Is Annalise Braakensiek? Sad New Details About The 46-Year-Old Model Found Dead In Her Home

Photo: Instagram
Details About Annalise Braakensiek's Death

Australian model Annalise Braakensiek was found dead on Sunday, January 6, 2019.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, police found the 46-year-old actress and model dead in her home in Sydney after her loved ones became worried about where she was. Police also reported that they have not formally identified the body and that the cause of Braakensiek's death is unknown, but that there is thought to be no suspicious intent involved.

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However, Braakensiek had recently opened up about some tough times she was having lately to her followers on Instagram and had been struggling with mental health issues for a while.

She was also a voice in the mental health community, serving as an ambassador for an Australian suicide prevention charity called R U Ok? The organization was one of the first to express their devastation about the model's passing with chief executive Brendan Maher releasing a formal statement. “We are still processing the news we have heard today. Annalise has been a huge voice for suicide prevention in Australia,” he stated. 

Braakensiek was not only a pillar in the Australian mental health community, but was also beloved by her coworkers, friends, and family.

Here are some more details about the Australian model and her sad passing.

1. Braakensiek had a long, successful career.

She was an international model who was discovered when she was only 16 on Bondi Beach in Sydney by a photographer. Braakensiek had appeared on magazine covers such as Cosmopolitan and Inside Sport and represented brands such as, Levi's and Toyota. The model also broke into the entertainment world by appearing in various television programs and movies that included Home And Away, Mr. Accident, and Pizza. 

She also had her own line of jewelry, which she started in 2011.

In addition, her website biography noted her as a "designer, entrepreneur, and chef."

2. She was a philanthropist. 

In addition to her prosperous career, Braakensiek devoted a lot of her life to doing charity work. Apart from her work with the mental health community, she also contributed to cancer charities after losing her father to the illness. She brought awareness and raised money for the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Centre, the Cancer Council, and the Starlight Foundation.

Braakensiek was also an animal rights activist, who worked with PETA, the RSPCA, and the Human Society International. 

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3. Braakensiek had recently gone through a divorce.

In April 2018, Braakensiek and her husband Danny Goldberg separated. They had been married for 16 years. Braakensiek first announced the separation to the Sydney Morning Herald, stating that the pair "would remain good friends."

However, the model's Instagram revealed another side to the divorce. "I don't know if a broken heart mends or learns to live in pieces," she wrote in an Instagram post, which she eventually deleted. 

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4. She was battling mental health issues, including depression.

Braakensiek was open about her mental health struggles and revealed to the Sydney Morning Herald that she also battled depression. "Very few people asked me 'was I OK?' And when I did say [I wasn't], they ran. I was so shocked by the reaction of so-called friends — the aggression, the lack of support. That's when I really realised the negative stigma with mental illness is rampant. People have that real 'what have you got to be depressed about?' [attitude]" she said. "Suicide and feeling you're on the edge; success doesn't come into it."

The model revealed that she had actually dealt with depression for 15 years, brought on by the death of both her father and her best friend. She also revealed that her depression eventually went away, but returned after she lost even more loved ones a few years ago. "It was an incredible amount of grief in a short space of time which left me incapacitated again," she revealed. "I couldn't get out of bed. I think I spent about six weeks in bed. I couldn't do anything but cry my heart out — it was a very frightening feeling."

Braakensiek also disclosed that it was her grandfather who helped her recover and that she began to focus on self-care to get better. "I've lost more people than I can count on two hands. I would be a robot if I wasn't brought down by this. You need people to care and be there but self-care is imperative as well ... I tackle it every single way I can, but I also honour the fact that I loved these people so so much and they've left and it's OK to not be OK."

However, Braakensiek recently gave some hints that she may have been experiencing tough times again. In an Instagram post from December 2018, she told her followers that everything felt "twisted and upside down." 

“Life’s challenges have been deep, dark, difficult, demanding and down right scary lately,” Braakensiek wrote on her page. The model then went on to thank friends for sticking with her through a "turbulent year." In another post from December, Braakensiek mentioned her best friend whom she'd lost a long time ago, writing, "my bestie in heaven. A day doesn’t go by when I don’t think about you."

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Sloane Solomon is a YourTango editor and writer who covers pop culture, lifestyle topics, and love and relationships.