Spokane Comedy Club mourns the loss of Tony Russell, a ‘loving’ employee

SPOKANE, Wash. — “He was never afraid to tell people he loved them.”

That’s what employees at the Spokane Comedy Club had to say about Tony Russell, a 37-year-old man who died by suicide last week.

Friends say making people laugh is just what Tony Russell loved to do. His friends say Tony’s biggest priority was always making sure everyone around him was happy.

“He never had an issue telling people he loved them,” Kristal Denigan, a co-worker of Tony said.

Tony worked at the Comedy Club for about a year, doing anything he could to help out.

“His dad had mentioned yesterday that he always cared for and loved other people more than himself,” Denigan said.

Tony joined the Air Force in 2003, and he served for four years in the Middle East and on several military missions around the world.

His friends said he dealt with PTSD. In fact, his mother said six other members from Tony’s Air Force squadron have died by suicide.

But, she said he brought the family a lot of joy, and they believe he’s at peace now.

Tony found joy in the people around him.

His friends say the “ray of sunshine” will be missed the most.

The Spokane Comedy Club is honoring Tony with a special tribute show on January 27 at 7 p.m.

The event will be free, but they will be accepting donations to help Tony’s family pay for funeral costs.

If you are struggling with depression and are having suicidal thoughts, there are people standing by 24/7 at the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.