Juice Wrld's mother, Carmela Wallace, is providing a resource for people suffering in silence with the launch of a new website, and she details her late son's own addiction, anxiety and depression in an open letter on World Mental Health Day.

On Saturday (Oct. 10), Wallace launched a new website, LiveFree999.org, to align with World Mental Health Day. The site, inspired by her son, serves as a resource for raising awareness of mental health challenges and supporting efforts to improve mental health. The mission of the Live Free 999 charitable foundation is to support programs that provide preventative measures and positive avenues to address mental health challenges and substance dependency.

Live Free 999 was founded by Carmela Wallace in April to honor her son Juice Wrld. She was inspired to name the foundation Live Free 999 after seeing a photo of the rapper wearing a jean jacket he bought from a thrift store; he had painted the words “Live Free” on the back of the jacket.

In the open letter, Juice's mother details their relationship and his journey to a music career, which he found solace in by sharing his emotions and struggles through his lyrics.

"Jarad and I were always close," the letter begins. "We liked to play pinball together. We had long conversations about his future and about the world in general. But like any mother and son, we had our issues. Jarad came from a family where academics were the highest priority, so I wanted him to focus on school, but he was always more interested in music. His teachers would often tell me that he was extremely gifted, but that he was always focused on his music."

As a mother, she would have candid, judgment-free conversations with Juice about his personal battles. "Jarad and I often had frank discussions about his struggles with addiction, anxiety and depression," Wallace reveals. "I think he felt comfortable being honest with me because I never judged him." She recognized that what Juice was dealing with was a disease.

Wallace also touches on Juice's impact on his fans even after his death from an accidental overdose of oxycodone and codeine on Dec. 8, 2019. He was 21. "I have been overwhelmed by the outpouring of love following the loss of my son," she continues. "His loving spirit which is communicated through his music has touched so many people. I launched Live Free 999 so that perhaps his death could mean something for other mothers whose sons and daughters are dealing with the same kinds of issues that my son struggled with."

Fans can visit LiveFree999.org to join in the mission to invest in mental health. Donations can be made to the foundation, and the net proceeds from merchandise sales are donated to Live Free 999. The Live Free 999 store includes merch designed with Juice's likeness and the organization logo. T-shirts and hoodies range in price from $24.99 to $49.99.

Read the open letter Juice Wrld's mother has written detailing her relationship with her late son and the newly launched LiveFree999.org website, and see throwback photos of Juice as a kid in his element playing music below.

Open letter from Ms. Carmela Wallace, mother of Jarad “Juice WRLD” Higgins on World Mental Health Day 2020 announcing the debut of the new foundation website www.livefree999.org

October 10, 2020

Jarad and I were always close. We liked to play pinball together. We had long conversations about his future and about the world in general. But like any mother and son, we had our issues. Jarad came from a family where academics were the highest priority, so I wanted him to focus on school, but he was always more interested in music. His teachers would often tell me that he was extremely gifted, but that he was always focused on his music. I’d often find him in the studio in the afternoon, pursuing his dream. He was laser-focused. In the end, Jarad won the battle and I agreed to let him take a year off after high school to work on his own music and his vision as Juice WRLD. When his career took off, I left my job in quality management to join his team. Jarad recorded music every day, in every city he found himself in. He amassed literally hundreds and hundreds of songs. The lyrics and melodies all made from his beautiful mind.

Jarad and I often had frank discussions about his struggles with addiction, anxiety and depression. I think he felt comfortable being honest with me because I never judged him. I recognized that what Jarad was dealing with was a disease and I know he truly wanted to be free from the demons that tormented him. As a parent, I believed early on and supported Jarad having access to counseling. I encouraged him to always share his feelings.

I have been overwhelmed by the outpouring of love following the loss of my son. His loving spirit which is communicated through his music has touched so many people. I launched Live Free 999 so that perhaps his death could mean something for other mothers whose sons and daughters are dealing with the same kinds of issues that my son struggled with.

My message to the parents and children is simple. You do not have to suffer alone. You do not have to be ashamed of your mental health struggles. There is help. There is a way out.

On Mental Health Day 2020, I have launched a new website LiveFree999.org in the hopes that it will be a resource to those that are struggling. If we can help even one Mother and their son or daughter through our work here, Jarad’s death will have meaning and his positive, loving, creative spirit will endure.

Sincerely,

Ms. Carmela Wallace

See Throwback Photos of Juice Wrld as a Kid

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