Today, world-renowned fashion designer and handbag extraordinaire Kate Spade was put to rest in her hometown of Kansas City. But, the night before the funeral, Spade’s father passed away in his home. Frank Brosnahan was 89.
Brosnahan, whose full name was Earl F. Brosnahan, Jr., had reportedly been “in failing health.” He was “heartbroken” over his daughter’s suicide on June 5 — at 55, she had hanged herself in her NYC apartment.
Born and raised in Kansas City, Spade’s father was surrounded by family when he died.
“Frank was born in Kansas City, MO and was a lifelong resident,” a statement from the Brosnahan family, obtained by Good Morning America, reads. “He served in the U.S. Navy before graduating from the University of Miami in 1949, after which he returned to Kansas City to work in the family construction business. He was president of the Midwest Heavy Construction Association the mid 19060’s, after taking over the a family business from his father Earl F. Brosnahan, Sr. and his mother Helen Rose Brosnahan.”
The statement continues on to say that later in life, Brosnahan was an avid tennis player and proud of his family’s accomplishments. He was married twice and had six children.
View the full statement below:
— Tony Morrison (@THETonyMorrison) June 21, 2018
Shortly after his daughter’s death, Brosnahan told The Kansas City Star, “Well, I don’t know what happened. The last I talked with her, the night before last, she was happy planning a trip to California to look at colleges. She doted on her daughter.”
Spade’s only daughter, Frances Beatrix, is 13.
When asked if the family would get through their grief, Brosnahan said, “I think they’re all right. We’re a large family and all close. We’ll get through it. But we certainly miss our bright, sun-shiney little person.”
Despite Brosnahan’s passing, Spade’s funeral service was still held Thursday at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish Redemptorist Church. Many of the attendees reportedly brought with them the coveted Kate Spade New York handbags.
“I hope that people remember me not just as a good businesswoman,” the designer told Glamour magazine back in 2002, “but as a great friend — and a heck of a lot of fun.”