She also was arrested several times on drug charges, probation violations and a misdemeanor assault charge against her mother.
But there was a period in her life where McCready thought she might be able to escape that pattern. She reluctantly joined the "Celebrity Rehab 3" cast with Dr. Drew Pinsky, and left the show believing she might be able to change.
"She was doing great," Bob Forrest, a chemical dependency counselor who frequently works with Pinsky and appeared on the show, told the AP on Monday. "She would go through these periods of three to six months where she didn't want to drink, didn't have an interest in drinking. And if she didn't drink, she didn't do drugs."
Just months after her appearance on the show in early 2010, McCready told the AP about the release of a new album, "I'm Still Here," her new love in Wilson and plans to reunite with her son, who was in her mother's custody at the time. But the progress seemed to unravel by late 2011. Her album debuted at No. 71 on the country albums chart and failed to gain significant radio airplay, and plans for a book and reality show failed to materialize.
She also was unable to immediately regain custody of Zander. McCready then took the boy from her mother, his legal guardian, and fled to Arkansas over what she said were child abuse fears. She was later found hiding in a home without permission.
McCready is the fifth participant in Pinsky's "Celebrity Rehab" shows to pass away since appearing on the show, and the third from Season 3. Pinsky has been criticized for the deaths and for showing such personal struggles on television.
In a statement, Pinsky said he had recently reached out to the singer after hearing about Wilson's death.
"She was devastated," Pinsky wrote. "Although she was fearful of stigma and ridicule she agreed with me that she needed to make her health and safety a priority. Unfortunately it seems that Mindy did not sustain her treatment."
AP writer Jeannie Nuss in Arkansas contributed to this report. Music Writer Chris Talbott wrote from Nashville, Tenn.
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