Reality star, actor and former child pageant competitor Kailia Posey has died at the age of 16, her mother has confirmed.
As a child, Kailia was among the young stars of the reality series Toddlers & Tiaras, which followed a group of girls as they prepared to compete in child pageants.
In the early hours of Tuesday morning, Kailia’s mother Marcy Posey Gatterman announced the devastating news that the teenager had died just a week after celebrating her 16th birthday.
“I don’t have words or any thoughts. A beautiful baby girl is gone,” she wrote on her Facebook page. “Please give us privacy as we mourn the loss of Kailia. My baby forever.”
No cause of death was given in Marcy’s Facebook post, though a statement from Kailia’s family to TMZ said that she had “made the rash decision to end her earthly life”.
In her memory, Kailia’s family has set up a fund with the Whatcom Community Foundation aiming to “help get much needed resources to students in crisis”.
Kailia appeared in 26 episodes of Toddlers & Tiaras – which aired on TLC in the US – in 2011, when she was five years old.
Those who have never seen Toddlers & Tiaras may still be familiar with Kailia, as a gif from the show showing her grinning mischievously at the camera continues to be popular on social media.
According to her IMDB page, Kailia had recently branched out into acting, playing a demonic character in the Netflix horror film Eli in 2019.
Sky News reported that she had also maintained her interests in pageantry, including competing in Miss Washington Teen USA earlier this year.
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