+

36-year-old singer-songwriter Scott Hutchison went missing late in the night of May 8, 2018. Around 48 hours later, his body was found.

Just before his disappearance, Hutchison, who sang in Scottish indie-rock band Frightened Rabbit, posted two cryptic messages to his Twitter account.

"Be so good to everyone you love. It's not a given. I'm so annoyed that it's not. I didn't live by that standard and it kills me. Please, hug your loved ones," read one of the messages. "I'm away now. Thanks," he followed up minutes later.


While his death hasn't been officially ruled a suicide, it seems likely based on statements from his family and bandmates.

"There are no words to describe the overwhelming sadness and pain that comes with the death of our beloved Scott," Hutchison's bandmates posted in a statement to Twitter on May 11.

His family wrote:

"We are utterly devastated with the tragic loss of our beloved Scott. Despite his disappearance, and the recent concerns over his mental health, we had all remained positive and hopeful that he would walk back through the door. He was passionate, articulate and charismatic, as well as being one of the funniest and kindest people we knew. In addition to his musical success, Scott was a wonderful son, brother, uncle and friend. Despite whatever else was going on in his life he always had time for those he cared for."

Hutchison was fairly open about what he called his "mental torment" both in interviews and in his art.

Frightened Rabbit's 2016 album "Painting of a Panic Attack" dealt with some dark themes, touching on mental illness and suicide. In an interview around the time of the album's release, Hutchison described life as "a series of extreme highs and very dark lows."

"I was given a very stark reminder of that when I started having anxiety attacks," he said in the interview. "I've always felt the physical nature of love and loss quite strongly, and known that pain can be a physical manifestation of anger or anxiety; but I'd never felt my brain completely taking over my body before, and that was a very odd thing."

Hutchison performs at a 2010 concert. Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images.

There's a lot of stigma surrounding mental illness, especially when it comes to the arts. Singer Geoff Rickly hopes we can have an important conversation before another tragedy like this strikes.

"Whenever we lose an artist (of any stature) to depression or drug use, (or eating disorders, bipolar, etc. etc.) I wonder: when will we, finally, remove the stigma in talking about mental healthcare???" Rickly tweeted.

For more than two decades, Rickly has been involved in one way or another with the world of music, having sung in rock bands No Devotion, United Nations, and most notably, Thursday. In a conversation via direct messages on Twitter, he expanded a bit on what he meant in his tweet.

"From my own personal experience, substance abuse is rampant in the arts. For example, the members of Thursday would speak about any band that didn't have to deal with at least one member needing help with substance abuse as lucky — as the exception," he says, citing the unstable environment of an artist's life as well as easy access to drugs as catalysts for addiction.

Rickly performs with Thursday in 2012. Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images.

After he turned 30, Rickly developed a heroin addiction. Despite his best efforts, it took him years to get clean again.

"Lacking a real healthcare plan did me few favors," he continues. "But lack of healthcare is very common in the arts. We've seen more than a few tours halted or cancelled due to mental health crises within one of the bands on the tour. And then there's always talk of how to hush things up so that the member can have privacy (which of course I support). But let's say that the occurrence of mental health crises on tour is much more common than most would guess."

Pride can get in the way of finding help, but there's ways through this.

"I think mental health is still a source of great shame for most people," Rickly adds. "Implying that there is anything wrong with their mind is still often considered an insult. For artists, I think there's a sense that we don't have much (money, material success) but the one beautiful thing that we get as an artist is a state of mind, a high level of imagination and a lot of time to explore it. If you devalue that, by saying our thinking is sick, it takes away from the one thing we have of any value. Or it can feel that way."

To fight this, Rickly is working on a podcast he hopes to launch later this year in which he'll try to have some of these difficult but necessary discussions with other artists. What happened to Hutchison was an absolute tragedy, but it doesn't have to happen again.

We can all fight the stigma of mental illness, and there are absolutely things we can do to help others we think might be at risk.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline lists a number of extremely helpful things you can do if you suspect a friend or family member might be suicidal. You can also call the Lifeline at (800) 273-8255 for a list of local resources in the event that you, a friend, or a family member are suicidal.

Pop Culture

Artist uses AI to create ultra realistic portraits of celebrities who left us too soon

What would certain icons look like if nothing had happened to them?

Mercury would be 76 today.

Some icons have truly left this world too early. It’s a tragedy when anyone doesn’t make it to see old age, but when it happens to a well-known public figure, it’s like a bit of their art and legacy dies with them. What might Freddie Mercury have created if he were granted the gift of long life? Bruce Lee? Princess Diana?

Their futures might be mere musings of our imagination, but thanks to a lot of creativity (and a little tech) we can now get a glimpse into what these celebrities might have looked like when they were older.

Alper Yesiltas, an Istanbul-based lawyer and photographer, created a photography series titled “As If Nothing Happened,” which features eerily realistic portraits of long gone celebrities in their golden years. To make the images as real looking as possible, Yesiltas incorporated various photo editing programs such as Adobe Lightroom and VSCO, as well as the AI photo-enhancing software Remini.

“The hardest part of the creative process for me is making the image feel ‘real’ to me,” Yesiltas wrote about his passion project. “The moment I like the most is when I think the image in front of me looks as if it was taken by a photographer.”

Yesiltas’ meticulousness paid off, because the results are uncanny.

Along with each photo, Yesiltas writes a bittersweet message “wishing” how things might have gone differently … as if nothing happened.
Keep ReadingShow less
All images provided by Adewole Adamson

It begins with more inclusive conversations at a patient level

True

Adewole Adamson, MD, of the University of Texas, Austin, aims to create more equity in health care by gathering data from more diverse populations by using artificial intelligence (AI), a type of machine learning. Dr. Adamson’s work is funded by the American Cancer Society (ACS), an organization committed to advancing health equity through research priorities, programs and services for groups who have been marginalized.

Melanoma became a particular focus for Dr. Adamson after meeting Avery Smith, who lost his wife—a Black woman—to the deadly disease.

melanoma,  melanoma for dark skin Avery Smith (left) and Adamson (sidenote)

This personal encounter, coupled with multiple conversations with Black dermatology patients, drove Dr. Adamson to a concerning discovery: as advanced as AI is at detecting possible skin cancers, it is heavily biased.

To understand this bias, it helps to first know how AI works in the early detection of skin cancer, which Dr. Adamson explains in his paper for the New England Journal of Medicine (paywall). The process uses computers that rely on sets of accumulated data to learn what healthy or unhealthy skin looks like and then create an algorithm to predict diagnoses based on those data sets.

This process, known as supervised learning, could lead to huge benefits in preventive care.

After all, early detection is key to better outcomes. The problem is that the data sets don’t include enough information about darker skin tones. As Adamson put it, “everything is viewed through a ‘white lens.’”

“If you don’t teach the algorithm with a diverse set of images, then that algorithm won’t work out in the public that is diverse,” writes Adamson in a study he co-wrote with Smith (according to a story in The Atlantic). “So there’s risk, then, for people with skin of color to fall through the cracks.”

Tragically, Smith’s wife was diagnosed with melanoma too late and paid the ultimate price for it. And she was not an anomaly—though the disease is more common for White patients, Black cancer patients are far more likely to be diagnosed at later stages, causing a notable disparity in survival rates between non-Hispanics whites (90%) and non-Hispanic blacks (66%).

As a computer scientist, Smith suspected this racial bias and reached out to Adamson, hoping a Black dermatologist would have more diverse data sets. Though Adamson didn’t have what Smith was initially looking for, this realization ignited a personal mission to investigate and reduce disparities.

Now, Adamson uses the knowledge gained through his years of research to help advance the fight for health equity. To him, that means not only gaining a wider array of data sets, but also having more conversations with patients to understand how socioeconomic status impacts the level and efficiency of care.

“At the end of the day, what matters most is how we help patients at the patient level,” Adamson told Upworthy. “And how can you do that without knowing exactly what barriers they face?”

american cancer society, skin cacner treatment"What matters most is how we help patients at the patient level."https://www.kellydavidsonstudio.com/

The American Cancer Society believes everyone deserves a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer—regardless of how much money they make, the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, gender identity, their disability status, or where they live. Inclusive tools and resources on the Health Equity section of their website can be found here. For more information about skin cancer, visit cancer.org/skincancer.

via Dion Merrick / Facebook

This article originally appeared on 02.09.21


At 1:30 am on Monday morning an AMBER Alert went out in southern Louisiana about a missing 10-year-old girl from New Iberia. It was believed she had been kidnapped and driven away in a 2012 silver Nissan Altima.

A few hours later at 7 am, Dion Merrick and Brandon Antoine, sanitation workers for Pelican Waste, were on their daily route when they noticed a vehicle that fit the description in the alert.

Keep ReadingShow less
Joy

Nurse turns inappropriate things men say in the delivery room into ‘inspirational’ art

"Can you move to the birthing ball so I can sleep in the bed?"

Holly the delivery nurse.

After working six years as a labor and delivery nurse Holly, 30, has heard a lot of inappropriate remarks made by men while their partners are in labor. “Sometimes the moms think it’s funny—and if they think it’s funny, then I’ll laugh with them,” Holly told TODAY Parents. “But if they get upset, I’ll try to be the buffer. I’ll change the subject.”

Some of the comments are so wrong that she did something creative with them by turning them into “inspirational” quotes and setting them to “A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton on TikTok.

“Some partners are hard to live up to!” she jokingly captioned the video.

Keep ReadingShow less