The father of iconic fashion designer Kate Spade has died the day before his daughter’s funeral, passing away at the age of 89.
Earl F Brosnahan Jr had been in failing health and he was also “heartbroken over the recent death of his beloved daughter”, the Brosnahan family said in a statement on Thursday.
Brosnahan – known to his family and friends as Frank – died on Wednesday night, just over two weeks after his daughter surrounded by family at his home in Kansas City, Missouri.
The family did not specify the cause of death.
His death comes after Kate Spade, 55, one of his six children, was found in her New York City apartment on June 5.
Police confirmed the designer’s death under her birth name, Katherine Noel Brosnahan.
It was not clear how long Spade had been dead before her discovery and an autopsy is scheduled to be performed, but Detective Shea said the presence of a note pointed to “a tragic suicide”.
The couple’s 13-year-old daughter was at school at the time of the discovery.
Spade’s husband Andy, with whom she built an accessories empire on the popularity of her colourful handbags, said after her death that his wife had suffered from depression and anxiety for more than 15 years but there had been no indication that she would take her own life.
“We are all devastated by today’s tragedy,” Spade’s family said in a statement.
“We loved Kate dearly and will miss her terribly. We would ask that our privacy be respected as we grieve during this very difficult time.”
Spade has been buried in a private service at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Redemptorist Church in Kansas City, where she was born, on Friday morning (AEST).
Brosnahan told The Kansas City Star before his passing the church had significant meaning to the family as it was the same church where Spade’s grandparents were married.
Spade was the co-founder of the designer label Kate Spade New York also a former accessories editor at the now-closed Mademoisellemagazine before launching her label in 1993.
The couple founded a new accessories label called Frances Valentine in 2016.
Tapestry Inc, the handbag company formerly known as Coach, bought Kate Spade in May 2017 to cater to millennials, who are drawn to the company’s quirky satchels and colourful tote bags.
Brosnahan worked in his family’s construction business. He is survived by his wife Sandy, five children and eight grandchildren, including Spade’s daughter Frances.
“He was especially proud of his wife, children and grandchildren,” the statement added.
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