Sophie Gradon’s lifeless body was found by her new boyfriend at her parents’ home while they were away on holiday, it’s been revealed.
The Love Island star was discovered on Tuesday by devastated Aaron Armstrong at her mum and dad’s place in Medburn, Northumberland.
She had moved in temporarily to house sit for them while they enjoyed some time away.
But a friend said Sophie had given no sign of feeling depressed or down when she arrived, and appeared to be in “good spirits” despite having spoken out against online bullies just weeks before her death.
“She was house-sitting for her family who had gone away on holiday,” the pal told the Sun .
“She had seemed in good spirits, and had offered to come over to Medburn to stay in the house while they were away.
“They had seen no cause for concern.”
Her mum Debbie and her dad were told soon after Aaron found Sophie’s body and are “understandably devastated”, said the friend, especially as she had recently made changes in her life.
“Sophie had wanted to settle down and was growing sick of the party lifestyle,” they added.
The 32-year-old had been struggling with financial problems of late, said a mate, although she was careful not to give away anything about it in public.
She’d also been rocked by the death of good friend Paul Burns earlier this month and was at his funeral last Friday.
Paul – better known as Mr Newcastle thanks to his celebrity friends and party connections as the manager of popular nightspot The Botonist – died of a heart attack at the age of 37, and stars gathered to lay him to rest last week.
After the funeral, Sophie appeared to be in a reflective mood as she shared quotes about living recklessly and made references to dying on her social media.
“I feel very deep tonight. Reflecting on life & what it means to live,” she tweeted at 10.40pm that evening.
Sophie shared a touching tribute to Paul that same day, thanking him for being there “when you recognised I needed someone”.
She captioned a grinning shot of her friend: “Today was all about you sweetheart. What an amazing send off for our Mr Newcastle Paul ‘Conrad’ Burns.
“Thank you for being there when you recognised I needed someone, you are a true saint. I only wish I had got to know you better. All my love and thoughts with your nearest and dearest.
“Vicky Pattison you made us laugh & cry all at the same time… #viviennewestwood Emma English you told us about his selflessness & the size of his heart Christiano & Andrew Shiel-Redfern you gave us insight into his love for his work & all his friends in this town Rosie Edge you gave us a collection of memories to treasure forever.
“I’ve never felt so emotional yet so uplifted in my life. #paulburns #mrnewcastle #restinpeace ,” she added.
Sophie also tweeted some reflective thoughts about Paul’s tragic death.
“I genuinely feel that when true & honest human souls get taken away from us, they are the ones who have found the meaning of life,” she said.
After the tragic news of her suspected suicide broke yesterday, Love Island dedicated Thursday’s episode to Sophie.
At the beginning of the episode, a smiling picture of Sophie flashed up on screens above words that read: “In loving memory of Sophie Gradon.”
A statement from the broadcaster read: “The whole ITV2 and Love Island team are profoundly saddened to hear the news about Sophie, and our deepest sympathies and thoughts go to her family and friends.”
It’s been confirmed to Mirror Online by an ITV source that the Islanders were told of her death off-camera after one person was dumped from the villa last night.
Ellie Brown was a friend of Sophie’s and will no doubt have taken the news hard.
It’s not yet been confirmed if she will leave the villa in order to attend the funeral.