Kentucky State Senator Karen Berg released a statement on Tuesday, saying that her son, Henry Berg-Brousseau died by suicide on Friday, December 16.

Democratic Senator Berg said that her son had “long struggled with mental illness, not because he was trans but born from his difficulty finding acceptance”. In her statement, Berg said, “The lack of acceptance took a toll on Henry.”

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Berg has previously talked about her son during legislative proceedings as she opposed Kentucky bills that aimed at transgender people, which have increasingly passed in Republican statehouses across the country. 

Who was Henry Berg-Brousseau?

Henry Berg-Brousseau was born on March 9, 1998, in Louisville, Kentucky to US Senator Karen Berg.

He graduated from Louisville Collegiate School and has worked as a Deputy Campaign Manager for his mother. Brousseau has also worked at the Delta Lambda Phi Social Fraternity and was a former field organizer at Show Me Change, a political organization based in Missouri, US.

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In 2020, he moved to Missouri from his hometown to work for Show Me Change. In her statement, the US Senator wrote, “At 24 years old, he had finally found a community, but that could not undo the brokenness that he already felt.”

At the age of 24, he died by suicide, as announced by his mother. In a statement released by her, she wrote “Last Friday morning, my son Henry died by suicide.”

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Describing her son, Berg wrote, “Henry spent his life working to extend grace, compassion, and understanding to everyone, but especially to the vulnerable and marginalized. As the mother of a transgender son, I gave my whole heart trying to protect my child from a world where some people and especially some politicians intentionally continued to believe that marginalizing my child was OK simply because of who he was.”

Brousseau had worked for Human Rights campaigns and several political campaigns to ensure positive change in society.