Lady Red Couture, a drag performer and star of the popular YouTube show “Hey Qween!” died on Saturday, July 25, at the age of 43. Lady Red Couture, whose real name was Kareemia Baines, died early on Saturday a few days after being rushed to the hospital for an ongoing illness, Instinct Magazine reported.
Her co-host on the hit YouTube show “Hey Qween!”, Jonny McGovern, confirmed the news of her death on social media:
McGovern wrote, “I can’t believe I am writing this message but the unthinkable has happened. This morning at 5am, I received a call from the hospital letting me know that Lady Red just passed away. I was told she was improving yesterday and ready to move out of intensive care. But very early this morning she had an episode and coded and she was just gone. I was just with her Mom and sister. We are in shock. We are devastated.”
He requested privacy for Lady Red’s close friends and family as they grieve their loss and thanked fans for their donations in the past week. He said he would be setting up a fundraiser with Lady Red’s sister to cover any additional costs. He finished, “But for today all I can do is cry and mourn the giant loss of my sister, creative partner and best friend.”
Lady Red Was Rushed to the Hospital on July 19 Due to a Chronic Condition
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Hey Lady Lovers! Had so much fun filming yesterday @heyqweentv You aren't ready for who our guests are this season! Gotta admit because of Covid 19, I am really missing Fried chicken on set, but the show must go on. Lol! Always remember to stay encouraged and safe! Love y'all! #stuntqueen #ladyred #hillshirefarmgeat #heyqween #becausetheyneedit #thugwhisperer #blackgirlmagicla #ladyboss #transvisibility #transattracted #fambam #hellogrinder #tittesonyourback #overthosewhodontsupportlgbt
The news of Lady Red’s passing comes just a day after McGovern posted that her condition had stabilized. The drag performer was hospitalized on July 19, McGovern said, due to complications she experienced from her “chronic condition -cyclic vomiting syndrome.” At the time, he said she was in the intensive care unit but had tested negative for COVID-19.
His next update came on July 24 when he posted, “All your prayers are working.” He said she’d been unconscious and on a breathing tube for five days before finally stabilizing. McGovern added that they had been hoping to move her out of the ICU over the weekend. Lady Red’s last Instagram post came on July 12 when she wished McGovern a happy birthday.
Lady Red Was a Staple of the Los Angeles Drag Scene & Best Known as the Co-Host of ‘Hey Qween!’
Lady Red was featured in a recent article by Harper’s Bazaar profiling the “most legendary drag queens” in the U.S. The article states that Lady Red described herself as the “largest live-singing drag queen in captivity.” She added, “I’ve been around for a long time, so anything that sparkles or shines, I’m very good at.”
Lady Red and McGovern have co-hosted “Hey Qween!” for eight seasons, a show in which they discuss current hot topics and interview different personalities including RuPaul, Alaska and Dita Von Teese. Harper’s Bazaar described Lady Red’s presence on the show as having “exuberant commentary, unmistakable laugh, and appetite for life.” The show’s YouTube channel has over 74 million views.
LA Weekly wrote that Lady Red was a staple of the Los Angeles drag scene, although she was originally from Park City, Utah. Lady Red was also a singer and had released an album, #Stuntqueen, in 2018.
Many Fans & Friends Posted Tributes to the Performer After News of Her Death Broke
Many people took to social media to share their shock and sadness at Lady Red’s passing. Drag performer Delta Work wrote, “Today’s passing of #ladyredcouture marks the passing of a legend who lived in her truth. Red helped create a platform for the stories behind the personas that have pushed drag into the forefront of social media. I have been friends with Red for 20 years and have seen first hand her celebration of life and the contributions of all beauty beyond stereotypes on and off camera.”
Drag performer Detox wrote, “Heartbroken. @mothercouture was an icon, a force, and a friend. Sending all my love to @jonnymcgovernisyourdaddy & the entire team at @heyqweentv for this tremendous loss. Ugh.” Drag queen Trinity K. Bonet posted, “This has f***** me up today!!!!! My girl… my bae…my smoke partner!!!!! There is no one like you!!! Cali lost a legend!! Rip @mothercouture you will be missed!!!! And I’ll definitely be doin a 21 blunts and fried chicken night for you sister @heyqweentv y’all in my prayers.”
Drag performer and personality Adore Delano wrote, “Lady Red Couture.. Such a bright ass light for many of us. Walking down the street every night will not be the same without your hugs & chats. The world won’t be the same without your laugh. Rest In Peace, beautiful.”