The Tragic 1975 Murder Of Kelsey Grammer’s Sister, Karen

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Though Kelsey Grammer was not in Colorado when his sister Karen was killed, he blamed himself for not being able to protect her. “It’s hard to explain,” he told Vanity Fair. “It’s not rational. But it happens anyway. I know a lot of people who’ve lost their siblings and blame themselves.” The grief, guilt, and anger stayed with him for a long time. He says that they almost killed him.

“What happens when you’re grieving and you don’t really have any place to put it is you tend to take it out on yourself,” Grammer told “In Depth with Graham Bensinger.” He took it out on himself with alcohol and cocaine. He would also roam around dangerous neighborhoods of New York City, looking for potential fights so he could unleash his feelings. Professional success, when it came, didn’t relieve Grammer’s sense of loss. In fact, during an appearance on “Oprah’s Next Chapter,” he said his sister’s murder briefly caused him to lose his faith in God.

After 20 years, Grammer told Bensinger he had an epiphany: “You’re carrying this as though you had something to do with it, and you’ve got to let that go.” But while he was able to forgive himself, the sense of loss hasn’t gone away. He quoted a line from his book to describe his feelings to People: “It was ancient grief that is forever fresh.”

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