Saturday, February 18, 2012

Neil Hope Died Five Years Ago - No One Noticed


Did you watch Degrassi Junior High back in the day? Neil Hope was on the show and played Derek Wheels Wheeler. Apparently Neil died about five years ago but no one even knew about it until last month. I guess the guy was a loner and his parents decided to start looking for him a couple of years ago and finally were told by police in Hamilton, Ontario that Neil had died way back in 2007, but his parents just found out last month.


Police say that Derek was a diabetic, died of natural causes and never listed a next of kin on any documents.

29 comments:

AllisonSeattle said...

That is really sad. I did watch DeGrassi back in the day. He made an appearance in the new version as well, but that was clearly a few years ago.

timebob said...

sad to pass and your parents don't know your gone.

He must of had some falling out with them.

xoApril said...

He died in a rooming house. As someone who is from Hamilton, that's pretty depressing. No way to live or die. Yikes.

Giulia said...

I watched Degrassi Junior High when I was a child.

What a strange story.
His parents didn't hear from him for years?
I understand sometimes people are estranged from their relatives, but I find that really sad.


Some friends of mine once got a message on their answering machine from the parents of the previous tenant, asking him to give them a call because they hadn't heard from him in a long time. He'd moved out 2 years before. -_-

Jasmine said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Giulia said...

Oh, and I remember his character's band, "Zit Remedy", LOL...

Rest in peace, Neil.

Jasmine said...

omg- I DO remember him wow, this sucks :(

He couldnt have been that old either. And ya know, you can die of natural causes like diabeties but if you dont take care of yourself, it's slightly more ominous to me than simply saying it was 'natural'. This is horrible, to die and have no one around you, very sad.
RIP Wheels

Audrey said...

Sounds like mental illness or substance abuse.

Casey said...

@Audrey - Diabetes is a killer disease, especially for people who don't look after themselves properly.

Pogue Mahone said...

That's so sad. Degrassi is STILL my favourite show and now my kids watch it with me,too!

joymama said...

Some people have an attachment disorder and don't connect with people, even family who love them.

He died of natural causes not drugs.

Pogue Mahone said...

Jasmine: he was 35 when he died. :(

Char said...

RIP Wheels :(

FS said...

He was estranged from his parents because of their addiction issues, his father had died from alcoholism. His brother was trying to keep in touch with him, he was apparently the one who started the search for him that finally ended up with the realization that he had died in 2007. The people in the rooming house had a different name and birthdate for him in their records, that's why they were not notified immediately. There is a lot more detail about this story in one of the Canadian newspapers, sorry I forget which one it was, I read it yesterday. Such a sad story.

anita_mark said...

I forgot about Zit Remedy. I just mentioned the name to my husband and he's singing their song. I'm laughing too hard to be sad, I think that's what Wheels would've wanted.

In other stupid Canadian news, did anyone see the Canada AM interview with the annoying kid in the new Reese Witherspoon movie? He gave away the ending and said who she picks.

MISCH said...

I never watch, never heard of him before. So sad to die alone .

WUWT? said...

^^MISCH just plugged a CDAN ad. "Don't die alone!"

Del Riser said...

I didn't know of him, but I do know diabetes is a very tough disease if not treated properly. Very sad that he had no family to count on.

ecua said...

This is really strange to me. Why wad he going by a different name? I agree that it sounds like mental health issues contributed to his mismanagement of Diabetes.

ecua said...

This is really strange to me. Why wad he going by a different name? I agree that it sounds like mental health issues contributed to his mismanagement of Diabetes.

Selock said...

So sad...I remember him well, my sister had such a crush on him!

Carl Brutananadilewski said...

xoApril - I'm from Hamilton, too! Holla! Haha.

I wasn't sure if this was real at first, because there have been a few hoaxes involving Wheels over the years. So sad to learn it is in fact true :(

__-__=__ said...

Thanks FS. That's what I thought too. It was the parents who had the drug and substance abuse issues. I could only encourage anyone to get away from that. I feel bad he had to die alone. RIP

xoApril said...

@Carl - heeeey! No one else around here knows about CDAN unless I tell them, glad to know someone around here is in the fold too :) never expected a story close to home make its way on here...

OMAMA is BROKO said...

Joey Jeremiah anyone?

anita_mark said...

My cousin always reminds me of the four Js, "Joey Jeremiah in his jean jacket."

mrs.wigglepuppy said...

April, I'm Hamilton ajacent, does that count?

So back in late 2000 I was going to college in Hamiton. We heard rumours that Wheels from Degrassi worked that the Pizza Pizza call centre so we would always order pizza from Pizza Pizza even though it tasted like crap in hopes that we would talk to Wheels one day. So one time we call and the guy on the line sounds EXACTLY like Wheels. So we ask, it this Wheels from Degrassi? On the line we hear ummmmmmm then click he hung up on us. Two minutes later we get a call back from Pizza Pizza and it's the call centre supervisor. He confrimed that yes we were speaking to Neil Hope and he hung up becuase he was embarassed that we figured out who he was. We told them that there was noting to be ashamed about. The shift supervisor then told us that he would send our pizza for free if we promised not to tell anybody that we knew for a fact that Neil worked there. He wanted us to respect his privacy. We agreed and we got our free pizza. 3 years later our friend got a job there and they confirmed to us that he had moved away and did not work for the company anymore. Once we knew for sure he was gone we all agreed that we could tell our cool Wheels from Degrassi story. I am so sad to hear that he passed. It must of been very hard to make that transition from child actor to young adult trying to make it in the world.

xoApril said...

It does - welcome!
Isn't that crazy... Someone with so much promise cutting out his family, going off the grid, working entry level jobs, living in a rooming house for $350/mo... Makes you wonder

Natalie said...

RIP Wheels. I loved Degrassi. My Dad made me watch the show as a way of communicating with me as a single dad taking care of his daughter.