Popular Wisconsin newscaster Neena Pacholke, who committed suicide in late August, had a contentious relationship with the man she had planned to marry, who had allegedly cheated on her before breaking up with her seven weeks before their marriage.
Pacholke, 27, and her former fiancé Kyle Hasse, 38, had bought a house in Wausau, Wisconsin; that was where her body was found after she shot herself with a 9 mm handgun bought roughly 90 minutes before her death. The day before her suicide, a friend removed other firearms at the home, fearing the damage Pacholke could do to herself.
“He told me he hates me and will feel like a million bucks once I am out of his life,” Pacholke texted her sister about Hasse; she had told one friend she once returned to the house and found panties that did not belong to her. The couple had been set to marry on October 12.
Just before she committed suicide, Pacholke sent a message to Hasse, writing, “I love you Kyle. I always have and always will. Despite how much you ruined me, I always had hope. I’m so sorry to do this to you but I can’t handle any of this pain anymore,” The Daily Mail reported.
TV news anchor Neena Pacholke dead after apparent suicide https://t.co/4KmmscgW1y
— Fox News (@FoxNews) August 30, 2022
At the time of Pacholke’s death, Hasse and his children were en route to Minnesota to visit his mother; he said he had spoken to Pacholke, who told him she was “going to do something.” He alerted police, who finally forced the door at the home to gain entry before they found Pacholke dead while leaning against a wall with the firearm on the ground while the bullet she fired into her head then left a mark on the wall.
One friend told The Daily Mail Pacholke, who had been point guard for the University of South Florida (USF) women’s basketball team, “They were always arguing, and it seemed like Neena was more in love with Kyle that he was with her.” Another friend said that Hasse had shown someone a naked picture of a former mistress, saying, “Look at her boobs and a**; I wish Neena’s body looked like that. … I don’t even want to go home to Neena. The only thing I get from her is a tax break because she only makes $47,000 a year.”
Yet Hasse asked her to marry him on May 9. In early July, they had a falling-out; he told her to move out of the house they shared, The Daily Mail noted. That prompted her to stay at a hotel for three days before they made up.
“She always had great smile on her face. But for her to commit suicide there must have been some life altering moment in her mind to take her own life,” a friend of Pacholke’s said.
Pacholke’s mother Laurie told WAOW-9, where Pacholke had hosted “Wake Up Wisconsin,” that she had been battling mental health issues for years. “She was getting treatment. I’ll put it out there — she had been to the crisis center a couple of times, Laurie Pacholke acknowledged. “She had so many people here to talk to. She talked to people, but she didn’t want anybody to know how she was hurting so she didn’t talk until it got so bad.”
Pacholke’s older sister Kaitlynn told the The Tampa Bay Times:
Sometimes you just don’t know what people are going through, no matter how much you think you know someone. … My sister had access to every resource you could imagine. She was loved by everybody. She was so good at her job … She just radiated love and positivity, and she just cared so much about pouring into other people, and always put other people first. I think she did that at the expense of not caring about herself.
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a free hotline for individuals in crisis or distress or for those looking to help someone else. It is available 24/7 at 1-800-273-8255.