Blush Reality Star Found Dead at 23
Todd Homme from the Lifetime Channel's new reality hit Blush: The Search for the Next Great Make-Up Artist was found dead at his New York home, and the cause was under investigation, his mother told TVGuide.com on Monday. He was 23.
"He went to sleep basically and never woke up," said Homme's mother Marianne Amster. "He was all excited about what was going on with the show. He was up all night, went to sleep during the day and he died in his sleep.
On Tuesday, Lifetime is scheduled to air the finale of the show in which nine contestants from around the country competed for a professional artist contract with Max Factor, a cash prize of $100,000 and the opportunity to be the makeup artist for an upcoming InStyle photo shoot.
Homme was found dead by his partner Neal Krogh, 34, who was taking a nap when he woke and found the reality star on Saturday night. Medical examiners couldn't confirm the cause of death of the seemingly healthy Homme.
"I went to the medical examiner early today, and they took tissue samples from his organs and the doctor said they couldn't find anything wrong with him," said Amster. "No drugs, alcohol or pills." Despite no prior heart condition, the examiners took tissue from the lining of his heart for testing after theorizing it could be related to his heart muscle, she said.
Maureen "Mo" Lewit, Homme's fellow Blush contestant, opened up about the loss. "Todd Homme was such a wonderful human being and he shined both professionally as a make-up artist, and as a person who was so thrilled about what lied ahead in his life and his work," she said in a statement. "His spirit of determination and his friendship will be sorely missed."
Homme's mother said she plans to donate her son's make-up and art supplies worth thousands of dollars because he was "very much for helping people that didn't have anything."
"It's devastating to us. We're in shock right now," said Amster. "He was born a month and a half early, walked at ten months and never sat down. He was always helping people and everyone calls him a guardian angel and he just loved everybody."
The services will be held Wednesday with the burial scheduled the following day at noon.
Lifetime did not return a call to TVGuide.com seeking comment.