The popular gaming enthusiast who had previously spoken about his struggles with mental health

By Jason Duaine Hahn
July 02, 2020 08:20 PM
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Byron Bernstein/Instagram

Byron Bernstein, a popular gamer known as Reckful who had nearly a million followers on the streaming platform Twitch, has died at 31, according to his friends.

Bernstein's death was confirmed on Thursday by the streaming platform.

"We're devastated to hear of Byron's passing. Our hearts go out to his family, friends, and community. He was a streaming pioneer and helped propel the whole industry forward," the statement said.

"Byron was someone who talked about his struggles to help make from for others to do the same. As we process this loss, we have to recognize that the stigma around mental health and treatment often prevents people from seeking and getting the help they need."

Byron 'Reckful' Bernstein
Byron Bernstein/Instagram

Just hours before his death was reported, Bernstein posted a series of photographs to Twitter and asked his ex-girlfriend Becca to marry him.

"I know I’ll always be a little too crazy... and this is proof... but at least you’ll never be bored will you marry me, Becca?" he wrote in a tweet.

"DO NOT make her feel pressured to say yes, I am completely insane here I have not seen her in 6 months," Bernstein added. "The reason for the post is I know she’s the one I want forever, and I wanted her to know my commitment is real."

In a pair of follow-up tweets posted a short time later, Bernstein said, "I feel bad for anyone who has to deal with my insanity."

"Please just know in these situations the insane person does not feel in control of their actions," he continued.

After his death, Becca tweeted addressing his proposal and spoke of her love for her late ex.

"I didn't see the proposal until it was too late but that doesn't change the fact that I wasn't able to be there for him," she tweeted.

"He was amazing. He taught me how to have fun, to experience more, and challenged me to try to be more than what I was," she wrote of the Texas-based gamer. "He was larger than life, too big for this world."

"He brought me to realize that I knew NOTHING about depression, NOTHING about mental health issues," she continued. "I had this vague idea of what it was and embarrassingly thought that I could help with trivial bullshit."

WARNING: Below video contains explicit language

Another of the gamer's ex-girlfriends, known as Blue, also paid tribute to Bernstein, telling her Twitter followers: "Yes, it's him. He's gone."

"I've been having a panic attack for an hour. I don't know what to do... Byron, I wish I could have helped you. We all do. I'm so sorry I couldn't," she tweeted. "Thank you for being a part of my life. Love you always."

In January, Bernstein used YouTube to open up about the improvements he has made with his mental health. The video is titled, "Reckful is no longer depressed for the first time in 16 years."

“I am actually day-to-day happy,” Bernstein said. “I’ve never felt this way in my life. I’m not saying it’s gonna last forever, but right now I’m happy.”

One of Bernstein's older brothers died by suicide when he was a child, according to the Daily Mail,

If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), text "STRENGTH" to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 or go to suicidepreventionlifeline.org.