As the 20th anniversary of Michael Hutchence’s death approaches, his sister, Tina Hutchence, maintains that the Aussie superstar was driven to take his own life by the combined forces of depression, the lasting impact of a brain injury, the bullying of the British media and a complex relationship with INXS, the band that had been his second family since his teens.
Tina tells The Australian Women’s Weekly that Michael “had said for a long time that he wanted to leave the band,” and that was one cause of stress and anxiety in his life. She also believes that her brother had never recovered from a brain injury sustained in 1992, when a cab driver punched him to the ground, fracturing his skull.
Moreover, since his marriage to Paula Yates (celebrity journalist and former wife of Live Aid hero, Bob Geldof) the British gutter press had hounded Michael relentlessly. “The idea of not being able to walk out of your house, photographers climbing over your fence,” Tina says, was taking a toll.
There is no doubt in Tina’s mind that her brother took his own life as a result of all these pressures. But now she hopes to put speculation about his life and death aside and honour Michael’s contribution to Australian music.
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Tina is campaigning to have a memorial statue of this country’s most famous and probably most gifted frontman erected in Sydney’s Darling Harbour entertainment precinct.
Read more about Tina’s plans and her speculation on the whereabouts of Michael’s missing millions in this month’s Australian Women’s Weekly, out now.
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