The singer from Hong Kong had struggled with depression for several years, according to her sisters, who shared the news of her passing on Instagram on Wednesday.
CoCo Lee died following a suicide attempt on Sunday. She was 48.
The older sisters of the singer-songwriter, Carol and Nancy Lee, who was born in Hong Kong, shared the sad news on social media on Wednesday, revealing that she had passed away earlier in the day. They revealed in a message shared on Facebook and Instagram that CoCo had been dealing with depression for several years.
“CoCo had been suffering from depression for a few years, but her condition deteriorated drastically over the last few months,” the sisters said. “With great sadness, we are here to break the most devastating news: CoCo’s condition deteriorated dramatically over the last few months.” Even though CoCo tried her best to overcome despair and sought professional assistance, the demon inside her ultimately won.
“She attempted suicide at home on July 2 and was admitted to the hospital,” they continued. She finally passed away on July 5 despite the hospital staff’s best efforts to revive and treat her while she was in a coma.
CoCo was a popular pop star in Asia who peaked in the 1990s and at the beginning of the 2000s. She joined Sony Music Entertainment in 1996, and according to Reuters, her debut album CoCo Lee ended up being the best-selling record in Asia that year.
Later, she released albums in Cantonese and English after becoming a Mandopop singer. Her song “Do You Want My Love” reached number one on the American charts, and in 1999, she released her debut English album, Just No Other Way.
At the 2001 Academy Awards, her inspirational song “A Love Before Time” from the famous movie Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, was nominated for Best Original Song. At the event that year, she gave a live performance of the song.
Notably, the pop artist also sang the Mandarin version of the movie Mulan’s theme song, “Reflection,” and provided the voice of Mulan, the female warrior, in the Mandarin version of Disney’s Mulan. She made three movie appearances, including Lee Xin’s No Tobacco and Master of Everything.
CoCo was married to former Li & Fung CEO and Canadian businessman Bruce Rockowitz. Despite not having biological children, she was the stepmother to her husband’s two girls.
CoCo’s sisters posted on Instagram that her singing career will be 30 years old in 2023.
“CoCo is also known to have worked tirelessly to open up a new world for Chinese singers in the international music scene, and she went all out to shine for the Chinese,” they said.
“As the CoCo family, we are appreciative and proud to have such a wonderful and exceptional sister. We praise God for sending us such a loving angel.”
Carol and Nancy thanked the medical professionals caring for their sister over the past few days and urged followers to be positive in the world in CoCo’s memory.
They stated, “We hope that everyone would continue CoCo’s wish to make everyone around her feel her love and happiness by not only missing her but also sharing her bright smile, treating people honestly, and expressing compassion and love to everyone around us.”
The sisters closed their message by saying, “CoCo’s rays of light will linger forever, even though she is only in the world for a short period of time.”
If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline by dialing 988, text “STRENGTH” to the Crisis Text Line at 741741 or go to 988lifeline.org.