Nick Santino, best known for his appearances on All My Children and Guiding Light ended his life earlier this week following a fateful decision. The actor adopted a Pit Bull mix named Rocco several years ago from a New York area shelter. Things went extremely well initially, but then his Upper West Side building passed a ban on Pit Bulls. Rocco was grandfathered in, but the building management supposedly began harassing the animal owner and refused to let the dog use the main elevator. Threats of barking-related fines followed until Santino decided to have the dog put down. Emotionally distraught, he headed over to the vet’s office on his forty-seventh birthday and said goodbye.

According to The New York Daily News, Santino returned from the appointment and left Rocco’s treats and bones on several neighbor’s doorsteps who had their own animals. He then went inside his apartment, made a few phone calls and ended his own life. One of his friends who read the suicide note said the actor spoke about betraying his best friend. Rocco was reportedly cremated, and his former owner will be as well.

I worked at an animal hospital for two years, and I can tell you everyone responds to putting down a pet differently. Some don’t seem overly phased and others cry for hours. The attachments people form with their animals are often extremely genuine, and I can’t even begin to imagine what Santino was feeling when he said his goodbye.

This whole situation is upsetting for a lot of reasons, but I hope, in death, Santino was able to find his own peace. Pop Blend sends out its sympathies to the actor’s family and friends, as well as all of those hurt by this tragedy.

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