Earlier this week, two Australian radio deejays from Australian station 2Day FM made news with a prank call to the London hospital where the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton was staying after being diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum (essentially severe morning sickness). The deejays were put through to Middleton’s nurse, where they pretended to be Queen Elizabeth and Prince Charles. Now the nurse who put the call through (and who was reportedly working reception though it was not part of her normal duties) has been found dead, an apparent suicide.
Jacintha Saldanha, 38, had worked at King Edward VII’s Hospital for the past four years. She was found unresponsive Friday morning at an address near the hospital, and was pronounced dead shortly afterward. The hospital expressed its condolences to Saldanha’s family, as did the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. The deejays involved have been suspended (some reports indicated they took voluntary leave out of respect for Saldanha) and their Twitter accounts have been deleted, and the radio station has expressed remorse (they had actually apologized to the Royal family for the stunt shortly after it occurred, explaining that the deejays did not believe they would be put through, as their accents were “terrible”).
Many in the public are angry and blame the station and the deejays for the woman’s suicide. As of now, there’s no information available suggesting a motive for the suicide, but the timing does suggest that if Saldanha was troubled (a fair assumption), her unwitting involvement in the prank may have sent her over the edge.
Jennie has contributed to Imperfect Women since its inception in 2009. She writes about politics, celebrity news, and anything else that catches her interest.