Tragic details emerge after death of Venus and Serena Williams' nephew

Venus and Serena Williams, pictured here at the US Open in 2018.
Venus and Serena Williams at the US Open in 2018. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Devastating details have emerged after the death of Alphonse Williams, the 21-year-old estranged nephew of tennis superstars Serena and Venus Williams.

Alphonse is Richard Williams' grandson (Serena and Venus' father) from his first marriage to Betty Johnson.

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However he never met Richard, Serena or Venus due to a nasty family rift that has been raging for decades.

Alphonse's mother Sabrina, who is Serena and Venus' half-sister, has spoken out about the devastating loss of her son.

“When my son attempted [to end] his life two and a half years ago, I asked God, save his life and give me a little bit more time, please," she told The Sun.

“And God answered my prayers. He did. He gave me two and a half years more than I expected.

“I knew he was on loan and God called in that loan."

Alphonse, who also had bipolar disorder, was recently diagnosed with Peyronie’s disease - which causes a curvature of the penis.

“He was crying last Monday, hysterical crying. The week before, the doctor confirmed what he already knew, that he had Peyronie’s," Sabrina said.

“He had started back at high school, he was going into his fourth semester of computer engineering and was regularly seeing a counsellor.

“It’s going to take six to eight weeks for the coroner to find out what he bought. We know he’s taken some strong medicines which would have made him fall asleep, he would have gone into respiratory distress, but wouldn't have known. He just never woke up.”

Alphonse Williams struggled with diagnosis

Sabrina said Alphonse had taken the diagnosis particularly badly.

“My son went to the gym, he was 165 pounds of pure muscle. He had only eight per cent body weight when he died, he was a serious athlete," she said.

“He became a vegan, he joined a couple of clubs, but the news that he got from the doctor...

“I read online for hours. One of the top symptoms is depression. I'm not denying that he died with mental health problems, but I truly believe that if my son got some help, somebody was able to talk to him, I think he would still be here.

“He had no idea that this thing was making him more depressed. When he got the news, he just couldn’t handle it, how many of us could have handled it at that age?"

Richard Williams, pictured here with Venus and Serena at Wimbledon in 2012.
Richard Williams with Venus and Serena at Wimbledon in 2012. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Sabrina said her father Richard never showed any interest in Alphonse and he never met Serena or Venus.

Richard went on to marry Oracene Price after leaving Johnson and the pair had Serena and Venus together.

“As far as my other sisters, Serena and Venus, my dad, since my son passed away, they’re dead to me,” Sabrina said.

“It’s going to be a mission to reach out to help other people, it will be his legacy, I miss my baby.

"That’s my life goal. I have an unconditional desire to help people.”

Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636, Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467.

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