'He will always be my baby': The day a grief-stricken Tina Turner laid firstborn son Craig Turner to rest
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA: News of Tina Turner's death at 83 has stunned the world and sent it spiralling into grief. But Turner herself was never far from it through her life.
Tina Turner said her final goodbye to her late son Craig Raymond Turner as she spread the ashes off the coast of California in 2018, following his shocking suicide at the age of 59 earlier this month.
Taking to social media, the 78-year-old music legend shared a heartfelt post as she joined family and friends to pay tribute to her late son. Craig was found dead on July 3 because of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, at his home in Studio City, TMZ stated, while Tina was attending Haute Couture Paris Fashion Week just a few hours before her son was found dead.
The singer stood among family and friends on a boat as she held her hand over the railings to drop a rose into the ocean. Tina captioned the picture; "My saddest moment as a mother. On Thursday, July 19, 2018, I said my final goodbye to my son, Craig Raymond Turner, when I gathered with family and friends to scatter his ashes off the coast of California..."
"He was fifty-nine when he died so tragically, but he will always be my baby," she concluded.
Craig was pronounced dead at the scene at 12.38 pm and Los Angeles County coroner's office assistant chief Ed Winter confirmed that his death was a case of suicide, although the official autopsy is yet to come out. Tina was only 18 years old when she gave birth to Craig, whose father was a saxophonist named Raymond Hill.
Tina went on to marry Ike Turner, who adopted Craig and gave him his name. Craig studied at Santa Monica College and worked in real estate at Rodeo Realty, in the San Fernando Valley. It is believed that Craig did not father children and he was not married at the time of his death.
The 'Proud Mary' singer has not yet made an official statement about Craig's death. Tina has four children: her son Craig, and Ronnie, 57, her and Ike's only child together, as well as Ike's two children from his first marriage — Ike Jnr, 59, and Michael, 58 — whom Tina adopted when they married in 1962.
In May 2005, Tina told Oprah that throughout Craig’s early life, Ike and Tina Turner maintained a rocky, abusive relationship. Craig had seen his mom get abused, and was "a very emotional kid."
"They saw the black eyes. Ike's children never reacted, but my oldest son, Craig, was a very emotional kid. He'd always look down in sadness," Tina had said.
"One day when Ike was fighting me, Craig knocked on the door and said, "Mother, are you all right?" I thought, "Oh, please, don't beat me at home." I didn't want my children to hear," Tina added. "I tried to have meals with the children, talk to them about life. But Ike had no sense of that. He'd always come home late from the studio. It was awful."
Tina said she only left Ike after Craig graduated from high school. Ike, a drug addict son of a Mississippi preacher, used to beat up Tina and after 16 years, she fled in the middle of the night in a bloodstained white suit with just 36 cents in her pocket. Since 1994, she has beein living in Switzerland with a German music producer Erwin Bach. The couple married five years ago. Ike Jnr said his mother had abandoned her kids after moving overseas, although he said they were looked after financially.
"My mother is living her life — she has a new husband and she's in Europe. She doesn't want to have anything to do with the past." According to Ike Jnr, Tina had distanced herself from the part of her life spent with his father and has cut herself off from her children.