Drugs and depression claim the young lives of adult film stars
On July 11, 1994, one of the most famous and beautiful adult movie stars of the early 1990s shot herself in the head. She was 23.
Savannah — her real name was Shannon Michelle Wilsey — starred in over 100 videos and in 1992 was named Adult Video News’s Best New Starlet. She was ranked No. 19 of the adult film industry’s top 50 porn stars of all time.
SEX, DRUGS AND ROCK ’N ROLL
Savannah, a heavy drug user, had relationships with Gregg Allman, who she started dating when she was 16, comedian Pauly Shore, singer Billy Idol, Mötley Crüe lead singer Vince Neil, actor Mark Wahlberg, Van Halen frontman David Lee Roth, Mr Big bassist Billy Sheehan and Guns N’ Roses guitarist Slash.
I’m kind of on the wild side.
I don’t think I ever went out
with anybody with short hair.
CRASHED HER CORVETTE
Shortly before her death, Savannah was driving home from a party with a friend, Jason Swing, when she crashed her Corvette into a fence and broke her nose. The couple made their way to Savannah’s house in Universal City, Calif., where she asked Jason to walk her dog. Savannah then called her manager Nancy Pera and asked her to come over. And then she went into the garage and pulled the trigger.
PAULY SHORE AT HER BEDSIDE
When Nancy Pera arrived at the house Savannah was still alive, but barely. She was taken to St. Joseph’s Hospital in Burbank and was put on life support. Eleven hours later her father made the decision to shut it down. Pauly Shore was at her bedside.
Friends, family and adult film associates attended her funeral. Shore was the only ex-boyfriend there. “She was the nicest, most beautiful girl I ever met.”
Shore said she killed herself because “she forgot who Shannon was” and became her drug-addicted film persona. “I knew she wanted out of the porn business.”
GALLERY OF TRAGEDY
January Seraph, who was described as “the sweetest person in the world,” hanged herself in 2018 in her San Francisco apartment at the age of 31.
Olivia (Lua) Voltaire died in 2018 in West Hollywood of a drug-and-alcohol overdose when she was 23.
A native of Nova Scotia, August Ames hanged herself in December 2017 in Camarillo, California, after being bullied online about her profession. She was 23.
University of Wisconsin student Alyssa Funke killed herself in 2014 at the age of 19 to escape being bullied by fellow students over her adult film roles.
Ex-Budweiser girl Clarissa Doll committed suicide in Las Vegas in 2006 at the age of 26.
Originally from a Punjabi family, Angela Devi asphyxiated herself with a plastic bag in 2006 in her home in Scottsdale, Arizona. She was 30.
Naughtier Childs was 22 when she jumped to her death from her fourth-floor apartment balcony in Hollywood in 2002.
Alex Jordan hanged herself in 1995 in her Marina Del Rey, California apartment at the age of 31.
The daughter of Jerry Van Dyke, the star of the TV show ‘Coach,’ Kelly Van Dyke killed herself in 1991. She was 33.
Megan Leigh was 26 when she shot herself in the head in 1990 in Solano County, California.
A sweetheart from the Midwest, Shauna Grant shot herself with a semiautomatic .22 caliber rifle in 1984 in Palm Springs, California. She was only 20 years old.