Days after Lisa Marie Presley's son Benjamin Keough died, more details have been revealed about his life. According to Keough's friend Brandon Howard, the late 27-year-old felt the "pressure" of his family legacy, as PEOPLE noted. Keough was the only grandson of Elvis Presley, who died over a decade before he was born.
Howard explained that Keough struggled with his mental health and that the coronavirus pandemic had an effect on him. He said, "Sometimes he struggled with depression, which is a serious thing with [the coronavirus pandemic] and everything happening right now and everybody being locked in the house. It takes a lot. I wish I could have been there." Howard went on to say that the "pressure" to live up to his family's legacy affected the struggles that Keough experienced throughout his life.
"That kind of pressure is definitely a part of what happened," Howard continued. "It's a tough thing when you have a lot of pressure with your family and living up to a name and an image. It's a lot of pressure. It's almost like you're pressured into having to be a musician, having to be an actor. It was good for him to go around the world and discover himself and have his own friends. You never know what triggers it. You never know ... It's so random." While Keough did struggle with his mental health, Howard noted that he was always there to lend a helping hand when someone needed it. He added, "He has always been there for everybody. In any kind of situation, he would be the one who would come crash with you on the couch for weeks until you're actually feeling better."
On Sunday, TMZ reported that Keough died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound in Calabasas, California. The Los Angeles County Medical Examiner confirmed on Tuesday that Keough died by suicide via an intraoral shotgun wound. In light of this tragic news, Entertainment Tonight reported that Presley is "heartbroken, inconsolable and beyond devastated but trying to stay strong for her 11-year-old twins and her oldest daughter, Riley," according to her representative. They added, "She adored that boy. He was the love of her life."
If you or someone you know are in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741-741.