Delilah Shares Personal Photos, Memories of Son Zack
In an undated photo, radio host Delilah Rene Luke posed with five of her 13 children, including Zack, far right. On Friday, the 57-year-old announced that her son, now 18, took his own life. “He was being treated, counseled, and embraced fiercely by family and friends while battling depression for some time now," she wrote to her 1.4 million Facebook fans. "My heart is broken beyond repair and I can not fathom how to go on…but I have to believe he is at peace with the Lord and that God will get us through." Here, a look back at Zack's younger years at home.
Zack, 5, with his rabbit at a farm in 2005. "He's standing in a garden that's called 'Shaylah's Garden,' I took the pic," Delilah told PEOPLE.
A smiley Zack covered up in bubbles in 2004. "The tub is jetted, and he discovered if he dumped my shampoo in, the whole tub filled with bubbles," the radio host told PEOPLE.
“He was my wild child," Delilah told PEOPLE of Zack, one of her three biological children. "Thirteen broken bones, umpteen trips to the hospital with appendicitis, tonsillitis, a fractured skull. He was wild but so, so, so sweet."
Zack, pictured with two of his siblings, "was a faithful friend to the outcast and the troubled. Dozens of his friends have written to me and told me he was like a counselor to them,” Delilah shared, adding that in the wake of his death, the mom of one of his friends reached out saying “he saved her daughter’s life when she was battling depression and anorexia, insisting the girl tell her folks and going with her to do that.”
Zack showing off his love of Bob the Builder (and cowboy hats) in an undated family photo.
Zack's struggles began recently, following a December 2016 car accident. “The event traumatized him,” Delilah said. A painful breakup and an illness followed suit and soon Zack found himself behind in school. “When he found out he wouldn’t graduate he spiraled into depression, and was honest about it,” added his mom, who quickly “found him doctors, a fabulous counselor and support group.”
Just before the end, “He was doing so well,” Delilah said. “He was looking forward to making up his missed credits, graduating and starting film school. He was fascinated with science fiction and time travel and began to talk about the book A Wrinkle in Time and quantum physics.”
While Delilah declined to share the manner of his death, she said Zack left behind a message: “His goodbye note did not mention sadness, anger, angst or depression, just a pressing madness about feeling like this world was not his home.”