The Osmond family gathered in Provo, Utah, on Monday for the funeral of 18-year-old Michael Bryan, Marie Osmond’s son who committed suicide on February 26.
“He was a man of his word. He wasn’t a talker, he was a doer. He was reliable,” said Bryan’s sister, Rachel Blosil, 20, who struggled through tears to eulogize her younger brother, The Associated Press reported. “He knew my hopes, he knew my dreams, my secrets, things that nobody knows. He was my best friend.”
Bryan was one of five children adopted by Osmond and ex-husband Brian Blosil, who divorced in 2007 after 20 years of marriage. Osmond announced in 2007 that Bryan had entered a rehab facility but did not reveal his reasons for treatment.
Marie Osmond had not planned to speak at the funeral, which was attended by more than 450 mourners at a chapel near the Provo temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, but as the service drew to a close, People magazine reported that she changed her mind.
“I’d just like to say thank you to everybody,” said Osmond, 50, who spoke to a gathering that included her seven surviving children and Michael’s biological mother. “As you see, I have amazing support from great men, my family, my brothers. God was very wise when he put me into a family with honorable men, because they have served as examples for my children.”
Osmond said she wanted to use the occasion to “honor my children,” adding, “I’m so proud of each and every one of you. I’m proud of my son, and I honor his birthmother who’s here today, who gave me the greatest gift. Thank you for those beautiful 18 years.”
Osmond was then joined by her brothers as they sang the closing hymn, “God Be With You Till We Meet Again.”
Police in Los Angeles said Bryan died of an apparent suicide after jumping from the eighth floor of his apartment building. An official cause of death is still pending as officials are awaiting results of an autopsy and toxicology tests. A note was reportedly left behind, but police have not revealed its contents.
Also choking up during the service was Marie’s longtime musical partner and older brother, Donny, 52, who had to pause to gather himself while delivering the invocation. “Bless my sister,” he said, crying. “Bless my sister and her family.”
Bryan was described as an accomplished musician who played five instruments, wrote original songs and worked with special-needs kids. He was in his first year of studying apparel manufacturing at the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising. He had planned on a career in retail marketing and design.
“He was an intricate part of our family,” said Stephen Craig, 26, the eldest of Marie Osmond’s children. “Each member of our family and every person here is better for having met him.”
A running joke at the funeral was the jockeying by each sibling to claim that they were Michael’s favorite. “My brother Michael loved me the most,” claimed 7-year-old sister Abigail. “My brother was funny, and he made me laugh. I liked playing the game Colors with Mike in our pool. My brother wrote a song about me that said I made him very happy. See, he did love me the most!”
After the funeral, a private moment was held at the East Lawn Memorial Hills Cemetery in Provo, where Bryan’s silver coffin was interred, and the family wrote handwritten messages onto orange balloons before releasing them into the air.