The 36-year-old reality television star who appeared on Kaitlyn Bristowe‘s season of the ABC hit was reported dead through his Instagram profile which included a false statement from his “family.” Less than 24 hours after the post claiming he was dead surfaced, Seiter took to Instagram to address his followers and fans in a video response.
“As you can see, I am alive and well,” Seiter began the video, explaining, “my account was hacked. For the last 24 hours, I’ve been trying desperately to get into it. Somebody was playing a cruel joke and mocking my mental illness and the struggles I’ve gone through with depression and suicide attempts, and I’m sorry for all the pain they caused when they made that post.”
Seiter further elaborates, “I just got back into my account. I am going to do all I can with my team to try to identify who was behind this, but again, I apologize for the confusion and I will update you guys as more facts come in. Thank you guys.”
The message comes hours after a statement from Seiter’s “family” was shared on his page, saying, “It is with an extremely heavy heart that we share the tragic news of Joshua’s unexpected passing. As all who knew him can attest, Joshua was an incredibly bright light in an increasingly dim world.”
“His fearless voice and indomitable spirit helped thousands of people in their darkest moments feel just a little less alone,” the false statement continued. “Although our heartache at Joshua’s passing pains us beyond measure, we find comfort knowing that he is finally at peace.”
With more than 450,000 followers on Instagram alone, Seiter’s false death report spread rapidly. As previously mentioned, Seiter appeared during Season 11 of The Bachelorette when Kaitlyn Bristowe played the titular role. Billed as a law student and an exotic dancer, Seiter didn’t make it past the first week of the competition.