World Traveling Television chef Anthony Bourdain has died at 61

Vincent Schilling

CNN confirmed Bourdain's death on Friday was suicide; once again the tragedy of suicide getting national attention

The world-famous television chef and CNN storyteller that took viewers all over the globe, including tribal nations in Montana, has died from suicide at the age of 61.

"It is with extraordinary sadness we can confirm the death of our friend and colleague, Anthony Bourdain," the network said in a statement Friday morning. "His love of great adventure, new friends, fine food and drink and the remarkable stories of the world made him a unique storyteller. His talents never ceased to amaze us and we will miss him very much. Our thoughts and prayers are with his daughter and family at this incredibly difficult time."

According to CNN, Bourdain was in France working on an upcoming episode of his award-winning CNN series "Parts Unknown." Bourdain’s close friend Eric Ripert, the French chef, found Bourdain unresponsive in his hotel room Friday morning.

CNN wrote that CNN President Jeff Zucker said in an email to employees, "Tony was an exceptional talent, Tony will be greatly missed not only for his work but also for the passion with which he did it."

Amidst Bourdain’s travels throughout the world, he took some time to visit the Crow Nation to learn about why horses were vital to Montana.

Video: Bourdain learns why horses are vital to Montana

The Smithsonian once called Bourdain "the original rock star" of the culinary world and "the Elvis of bad boy chefs." Season 11 of "Parts Unknown" premiered on CNN last month.

Bourdain’s death is the second internationally known suicide this week which happened after fashion designer Kate Spade hanged herself in an apparent suicide at her Manhattan apartment on Tuesday.

The tragedy of Suicide getting international attention

In the wake of Bourdain’s death, CNN has taken additional measures to ensure the public has access to calls for help. They list on the article about Bourdain:

Asking For Help

The suicide rate in the United States has seen sharp increases in recent years. It's now the 10th leading cause of death in the country, according to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Studies have shown that the risk of suicide declines sharply when people call the national suicide hotline: 1-800-273-TALK. There is also a crisis text line.

According to a June 7, 2018 report: Suicide rates have been rising in nearly every state, according to the latest Vital Signs report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In 2016, nearly 45,000 Americans age 10 or older died by suicide. Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death and is one of just three leading causes that are on the rise.

The most recent overall suicide rates (2014-2016) varied four-fold; from 6.9 per 100,000 residents per year in Washington, D.C. to 29.2 per 100,000 residents in Montana.

Across the study period, rates increased in nearly all states. Percentage increases in suicide rates ranged from just under 6 percent in Delaware to over 57 percent in North Dakota. Twenty-five states had suicide rate increases of more than 30 percent.

According to the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report from March 2, 2018, Suicide disproportionately affects American Indians/Alaska Natives (AI/AN). The suicide rate among AI/AN has been increasing since 2003 and in 2015, AI/AN suicide rates in the 18 states participating in the National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS) were 21.5 per 100,000, more than 3.5 times higher than those among racial/ethnic groups with the lowest rates.*

As a result of historical trauma and vastly underfunded federal programs, American Indians and Alaska Natives experience a plethora of health, educational and economic disparities that are not as prevalent to the general population. Ultimately, Native teens experience the highest rate of suicide of any population group in the United States.

More facts on statistics in Indian Country can be found via the Center For Native American Youth here.

Follow Indian Country Today’s associate editor and senior correspondent, Vincent Schilling (Akwesasne Mohawk) on Twitter -@VinceSchilling