How did Halston die? The real life story of the legendary fashion designer’s death

The new Netflix series is all about his incredible life

New Netflix series Halston is all about the rise and fall of the iconic fashion designer in 1970s New York. At the height of his career Halston was the best of the best, but he then lost control of his spending, lifestyle, and most importantly – his brand. It was in 1990 that Halston would die, and the Netflix series looks at how his fashion house was in a battle over its control and the designer’s spending and lifestyle had caught up with him.

Halston was born in Des Moines, Iowa, on April 23rd 1932. He is thought to have had an interest in fashion very early on and during his life, Halston became one of the most sought after designers for the rich and famous, with the First Lady Jackie Kennedy, Liza Minnelli and Lauren Bacall among his clients. Here’s what we know about his tragic death.

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via Netflix

How and when did fashion designer Roy Halston Fenwick die?

In 1988, Halston tested positive for HIV. After his health began to fail, he moved to San Francisco, where he was cared for by his family. After he was hospitalised, his family are said to have brought him gourmet meals approved by his doctor. Halston enjoyed a breathtaking view of the Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco Bay area from his hospital room, which was filled with orchids and other flowers.

On March 26th 1990, Roy Halston Fenwick died in his sleep due to complications with AIDS. After a year and a half battle with an AIDS related lung cancer, the designer was 57-year-old when he died of what the hospital described in a statement as “Kaposi’s sarcoma involving the lungs.” Kaposi’s sarcoma is a type of cancer that can form masses in the skin, lymph nodes, or other organs.

In a statement shortly after his death, Halston’s borther said the family “mourns the loss of a magnificent and deeply respected brother and friend.” The statement added: “We thank all those from around the world who have been communicating thoughtful wishes to him. America has lost a true patriot and its greatest designer, one of the greatest designers in the world.”

At the time of Halston’s death, Liza Minnelli said: “I’m very, very saddened by this loss. I just lost my best friend.” Calvin Klein later called him the “greatest American fashion designer who ever lived”.

Halston is available on Netflix from May 14th. For all the latest Netflix news, drops, quizzes and memes like The Holy Church of Netflix on Facebook. 

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