(Lauren Evans) Bill de Blasio has been clear that the reason for his name change—he was born Warren Wilhelm, Jr.—was due to his estrangement from his father. What was heretofore unknown, however, is that his father committed suicide when de Blasio was only 18.

“While this has been a private part of my family’s life, it is now clear a media story will soon emerge," a statement from the mayoral frontrunner reads. "My father tragically ended his life while battling terminal cancer in 1979.”

The statement was released minutes after a story in the Post reported that de Blasio's father—a Yale graduate who lost part of his leg in the Battle of Okinawa—was found with a self-inflicted gunshot wound in a parked car in New Milford, Connecticut more than 30 years ago.

De Blasio has in the past expressed his respect for his father and his travails as a veteran.

“I think honestly, as we now know about veterans who return, [he] was going through physically and mentally a lot from that point on, "de Blasio told WBGO-FM last year. "And by the time I came along in the beginning of the 60s, he was unfortunately in a downward spiral.”

De Blasio's mother was an author who for years lived near her son in Park Slope. She passed away in 2007.

Read More: Gothamist

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