The Bizarre Connections Between These Celebrity Deaths

Prince’s 2016 death made international headlines, but as reported by People, someone very close to Prince died two months before him but made significantly fewer headlines. Denise Matthews, who was the same age as Prince and performed under the stage name Vanity, was Prince’s ex-girlfriend, musical partner, and muse. She headed Vanity 6, an all-girl rock band Prince put together, and was both the inspiration and the planned lead actress for his film Purple Rain. She didn’t act in it, however, because she and Prince broke up before filming could commence.

In 1994, Vanity suffered a drug overdose that severely damaged her kidneys, something she would suffer through for the rest of her life. Months before her death, she revealed she had a rare, fatal abdominal disease (sclerosis encapsulating peritonitis), which likely took her life. A day after she died, Prince dedicated his performance of “Little Red Corvette” to her, saying, “Her and I used to love each other deeply. … She loved me for the artist I was; I loved her for the artist she was trying to be.” Two months later, he was also dead, at the age of 57. Vanity’s age at death? 57.

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