Lady Gaga mourns 'Born This Way' model Zombie Boy

Rick Genest ‘Zombie Boy,’ from Lady Gaga’s ‘Born This Way’ video has died from an apparent suicide. More

Quebec model Rick Genest, known as "Zombie Boy" has died.

After spending several years on the local freak show circuit, Genest was approached by Nicola Formichetti - creative director for fashion mogul Thierry Mugler, and Lady Gaga's stylist - who catapulted him to global fame: this time as a supermodel, as opposed to a side-show attraction.

Management for Rick posted a tribute on Facebook, saying they were "shocked and pained" by his death. We should work harder to change the culture and to pay more attention to mental health, you need to get rid of prejudices, about which we can not speak.

The Police Department of the City of Montreal confirmed to Radio Canada Rick's cause of death is suicide.

Rick Genest, aka Zombie Boy, during the making of an anti-bullying video in Montreal in November 2012.

His claim to major fame was his 2011 performance alongside pop-star Lady Gaga in her "Born This Way" music video which helped spark his modelling career.

"Reach out if you're in pain", she said. "We must save each other", Lady Gaga writes. Yet Mental Health America has research statistics that only one-in-five people will report an unmet mental health need.

He held world records for having the most bones tattooed on his body, and the most insect tattoos.

British artist Marc Quinn is crafting a 3.5-meter (11.5-foot) bronze sculpture of Genest set to be shown at the London Science Museum's new Medicine Galleries late next year.

Over the years, Genest walked the runway for Thierry Mugler, appeared in fashion magazines like GQ and Vanity Fair, and made his name in a plethora of other modeling gigs.

At the age of 15, the model discovered that he had a brain tumour, and that the surgery to remove it could kill him or leave him disfigured.

He said: "I became addicted to tattoos and now have a complete body suit (minus my privates) and a full facial tattoo of a skeleton-style face and zombie-like brain".