The Dukes of Hazzard star Catherine Bach and celebrity lawyer Peter Lopez’s married life seemed to be picture-perfect. They had a nice home, two beautiful daughters, and enjoyed spending all of their spare time together. What more could Peter wish for?
That was until April 30, 2010, when an inexplicable tragedy happened. On that day, Peter took his own life by shooting himself in the head on the family’s property.
Catherine’s grief was more than words can describe. But she decided to talk about her husband’s suicide openly, hoping that her story may help others.
Catherine opens up about Peter’s suicide
What makes Peter’s suicide so strange is that there had been no signs that he was about to do something to himself, Catherine recalled. In an interview with HuffPost, the actress said that day was just like any other day.
Peter took the girls to school, came back home, went to a remote corner on the property, and shot himself. A suicide note was found later, but it didn’t offer any clues as to why Peter did that. He only said in the note that he loved Catherine and their daughters, Laura and Sophia, and asked for forgiveness.
In the years that followed, Catherine struggled to come to terms with her husband’s death and tried hard to make sense of it. She read plenty of literature on suicide, looking for an explanation.
In her interview with HuffPost, she explained that a childhood trauma that haunted Peter probably pushed him over the edge, and work stress also may have been at play.
As a lawyer, Peter represented many high-profile clients, including Andrea Bocelli and Michael Jackson. Such job is always a source of stress, especially when something doesn’t go as planned.
Catherine told HuffPost:
He had a lot of clients that he was making big deals for and I think that there was a certain anxiety that came about with that.
Catherine was in a state of shock for a year, but she couldn’t let herself become unglued, as she needed to be strong for her daughters (they were only 11 and 14 when their dad took his own life).
The actress' friends rallied around her and the girls, and she stayed connected to a local priest, who would visit the family regularly and offer spiritual support.
The family also did grief therapy. Catherine said in a 2012 interview with ET:
My girls and I do grief therapy, I think it's very important to heal from something like this.
Most importantly, she was never angry with Peter. She said:
I can't get mad at Peter, because I love him that much and I trusted him that much. He must have had a good reason for doing what he did.
Despite the lingering pain and questions that can never be answered, Catherine managed to keep the family together and rebuild their life, and she deserves the highest praise for that.