Parents Of 9-1-1: Lone Star Actor Who Died Of Overdose Are Speaking Out, Hoping 'Our Story Might Save Others'

Tyler Sanders screenshot Just Add Magic: Mystery City trailer
(Image credit: Amazon Prime)

Months after up-and-coming 9-1-1: Lone Star alum Tyler Sanders was found dead in his Los Angeles home, details have been announced about the cause of death. After the Los Angeles County Medical-Examiner Coroner revealed that the 18-year-old passed away due to an accidental drug overdose while using fentanyl, his parents are speaking out and hoping that his story might save others. 

David and Grace Sanders, the parents of Tyler Sanders, gave a statement to E! News about their belief that their son didn’t use drugs recreationally but rather to cope with his depression. His mother explained that, like other families in this situation, they “never thought this could happen” to them and that Sanders had a “strong support system.” 

Despite that, she revealed he never was able to successfully overcome his “persistent depression,” which led to his accidental overdose and death. While Sanders suffered from depression, his mother Grace added, he tried to ensure that others around him didn’t feel the same. She said:

Perhaps because of his depression, Tyler sought out deep connections and to bring those around him joy. While Tyler quietly fought his inner battles, he was outwardly determined to make sure no one felt as he did. Tyler loved the Lord, loved people, and did his best every day. It is our sincere prayer that our story might save others.

Tyler Sanders apparently worked against showing any hint of depression and "quietly" fought the "inner battles," and perhaps that’s evident from his Instagram page. Sanders has plenty of pictures of him doing fun things, wearing nice outfits, and hanging out with other actors. Sanders was smiling in this post from May, which shows him posing in a Lamborghini and hanging out with The Flash's talented Jordan Fisher

When the young actor wasn’t working on the sets of Rob Lowe’s  9-1-1: Lone Star or Nathan Fillion's The Rookie, dad David Sanders explained that his son Tyler was “actively seeking treatment” for his depression. Though he was seeking treatment, Sanders ultimately began to "experiment with drugs." TMZ reported that the coroner stated Sanders had a history of drug abuse and had used mushrooms, heroin, cocaine, and LSD in the past, in addition to fentanyl. It’s reported that Sanders texted a friend about using fentanyl the night before his death and did not answer the friend's phone calls following the text. 

It’s certainly sad to hear the story of Tyler Sanders, with the career of a promising young actor and life of a young man cut short so soon. Unfortunately, struggles with drug use and mental health aren’t necessarily uncommon in Hollywood. A number of actors ranging from Phillip Seymour Hoffman to Heath Ledger died from drug overdose, and the same problem exists outside the acting world. The Sanders family is doing their part to try and prevent others from suffering the same fate as their son, and hopefully, others will take their story as a cautionary tale. 

CinemaBlend offers its continued condolences to the family of actor Tyler Sanders as they continue to grieve their son throughout the end of the year. Hopefully, in spreading the message of their son's struggles, they can inspire others to seek treatment for whatever struggles they’re going through. 

Mick Joest
Content Producer

Mick Joest is a Content Producer for CinemaBlend with his hand in an eclectic mix of television goodness. Star Trek is his main jam, but he also regularly reports on happenings in the world of Star Trek, WWE, Doctor Who, 90 Day Fiancé, Quantum Leap, and Big Brother. He graduated from the University of Southern Indiana with a degree in Journalism and a minor in Radio and Television. He's great at hosting panels and appearing on podcasts if given the chance as well.