|Birth: ||Dec. 24, 1962|
|Death: ||Jul. 28, 1998|
Los Angeles County
Della Barris was the only child of television producer/director/game show legend Chuck Barris. She herself was brought into the public eye as a pre-teen, appearing with her father on "The Gong Show"; she would also appear in the feature film made around the premise of "The Gong Show."
Finding out anything about Della has been difficult; the photo used on this memorial page is a public domain photo from an article which came out after Della's death. Her father did not write his own memoir on Della until 2010, over ten years after Della's passing; the book, "Della - A Memoir" is available through Amazon and other avenues, and addresses Mr. Barris' feelings of loss and guilt that he could not 'save' his daughter from her addictions and darknesses.
Della struggled with drug abuse throughout her life; by the time she died, she had gone through her trust fund many times over, as well as alienated many of the individuals that Mr. Barris speaks of in his book as trying to help her, but not 'knowing what to do', in the end result.
This page is not to judge Della, nor her family and friends. Anyone who has had drug abuse or other addictions in their own family (my own family is included in that description) will tell you that no matter what you do to help the addicted individual, it is not enough, it's too much, it's the wrong thing, it's - endless. Della herself seemed to be resigned to either a tragic life or a short one - perhaps both.
There is some documentation that Della was very artistic, and painted, selling the paintings to support herself, after her family had stepped back from the situation. Again, Mr. Barris notes honestly that he and his daughter had not seen one another in years, due to her issues, and it was only shortly before her death that she and her father began staying in contact, once more.
I decided that Della should have a page up on this site, not because of her show biz connections, nor because of the tabloid-like fodder that does show up now and then on the web. She deserves a memorial page because she was someone's daughter, someone's friend, and she struggled through her short life as best as she could, and she should be remembered.
Della is, however, somewhat of an enigma. In this age of everything making it online, from what we had for breakfast to what we think of our bosses when they aren't within earshot, this young woman seems to have disappeared, in some ways...whether it was due to the life she lived, or perhaps a peculiar example of how our mentally ill, addicted and other disabled individuals 'fade away', it isn't right.
And so, with that in mind, this is Della's page, and it would be nice to see flowers and good words left for her. Every human being has a heart, a story and leaves behind a memory, and it is never too late to remember someone, in my own opinion.
Della died on July 28, 1998 in Brentwood, California; her death was bandied around to be a suicide, but the official decision ended up being listed as accidental.
For more information on this young woman, her father's memoir is an interesting read - because I reviewed it, I would rather not get into what I liked or disliked about the book. Again, as having addiction deaths in my own family, I know that Mr. Barris can never tell 'the whole story', because, very possibly, he himself did not even know it.
While many media comments state that Della was 36 years old at the time of her death, her verified birthdate and deathdate, in fact, make her 35.
Specifically: Information unavailable to public
Created by: Rhonda C. Poynter
Record added: Oct 04, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 98249657