11:34 AM PT: The L.A. County Medical Examiner tells The Blast an autopsy was completed on Raston, and the cause of death was confirmed as a gunshot wound to the head with the manner determined to be a suicide. The case has closed.
In a statement to The Blast, the singer said, “Yesterday, Kjell, My husband of forty years and the love of my life killed himself. There are no words to describe what we are feeling now. He was an amazing man, a great husband and the best father I could imagine to our son. He dedicated his life to loving and supporting his family.”
She continued, “In recent years, his health began to decline and he developed a rare and horrible skin disease called Bullous Pemphigoid. He also became very depressed. That, along with the many medications he needed to take, became too much for him, and he ended his suffering.”
According to the American Osteopathic College of Dermatology, Bullous Pemphigoid is an autoimmune disorder that causes chronic blistering of the skin.
Charo concluded her statement by saying, “None of us had any idea this could happen to such a wonderful, kind and generous man. Please, if anyone you know and love is suffering from depression or illness, hold them close, tell them you love them with all your heart and that the world is better because they are in it. Get any help you can. Suicide is not the answer.”
A rep for Charo says there are no funeral plans at the moment.
According to the Beverly Hills Police Department, officers were dispatched to the couple’s Beverly Hills home at 12:31 PM on Monday. Beverly Hills Police and Fire personnel attempted life-saving measures and transported the person to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. He passed away at 1:00 PM.
Law enforcement sources tell The Blast that Rasten died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound (we’re told he used a semi-automatic pistol) and that Charo was home at the time.
We’re told the original 911 caller thought at first that he had fallen and hit his head. According to a source on the scene, Charo was seen running out of the house screaming and covered and blood. She was understandably inconsolable and rode with Rasten in the ambulance.
Our sources say it is unclear what led up to it and there did not appear to be a note left behind.
Charo and Rasten were married in 1978. It was the singer’s second marriage after she was previously married to bandleader Xavier Cugat from 1966-1978, though she has said that was merely a business arrangement.