Carrie and Gregory

Today's New York Times revisits the death on Oscar weekend in February of R. Gregory Stevens, the gay Republican operative who had been staying with actress (and active Democrat) Carrie Fisher. Theirs was, says the NYT, "one of the more improbable friendships that Hollywood and Washington have known." He died of a drug overdose, and in the long Arts and Leisure piece, his brother Grant (a Beverly Hills plastic surgeon) is quoted telling investigators that Stevens discovered cocaine at age 18.

Before its abrupt end, Mr. Stevens's journey had taken him from the beaches of San Clemente, Calif., and the slopes of Sun Valley, Idaho, all the way up the Republican ranks to a job in the first Bush White House at age 26. And it launched him on a jet-setting career as a political fixer manipulating elections in backrooms and palaces from Costa Rica to Croatia, Thailand to Togo, South Korea to the former Soviet Union....

"We all knew he had a substance abuse problem," said a former colleague, who insisted on anonymity to avoid alienating Mr. Stevens's survivors....

In November, 10 days after the election, he was arrested in Washington for possession of crack cocaine and drug paraphernalia, according to the coroner's report. Later that month, the report indicated, he showed up high at his family's Thanksgiving dinner.

Fisher, who was interviewed, said she had tried to get him to "face his drug problem." Although the original stories said he died in a guest bedroom, the NYT piece says Fisher woke up next to Stevens, whom she met on a plane eight years earlier. (Spotted at Defamer.)

Previously at L.A. Observed: GOP adviser found dead by Carrie Fisher

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