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Teens Reel From Mysterious Death of 13-Year-Old YouTube Star

YouTube stars have a personal connection to their audience, which is why the sudden death of 13-year-old Caleb Logan (real name is Caleb LeBlanc) is hitting his fans particularly hard and has them desperately seeking answers. Caleb was a member of the popular Bratayley family, who broadcast daily videos to their 1.7 million online subscribers. On Friday Caleb's mom Katie shared the heartbreaking news in an Instagram post.

"Yesterday at 7:08 p.m. Caleb Logan Bratayley passed away of natural causes. This has come as a shock to all of us. Words cannot describe how much we will miss him," the post started out. "His incredibly funny, loving and wonderful spirit made us all fall in love with him as a YouTuber, friend, brother and son. We know you tune in to watch each day and eagerly anticipate new videos, but ask that you bear with us while we deal with this tragedy as a family."

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News reports say that paramedics arrived at the family home and found the teen suffering from an "unknown medical emergency" and that he later died at a local hospital.

Please kiss your kids and tell them you love them every day. You never know what day will be their last.

The ambiguity of the cause of death had fueled speculation amongst Caleb's mostly teen fan base, especially in light of the fact that the family regularly shares so many aspects of their daily lives on their popular YouTube channel. Rumors—some that were saying the teen died of an anxiety attack brought on by news of an impending hurricane—spurred his parents to release a statement on the cause of their son's death.

"Caleb's death has raised many questions about how and why this could happen to a seemingly healthy boy," they shared on Instagram. "Sadly, tests have confirmed today that Caleb passed away from an undetected medical condition. We'll have more definitive answers in the coming weeks but ask that you help us celebrate his life instead of focus on his death."

Understandably, teens are shaken by the fact that someone their own age could die so suddenly. My teen daughter, while not a regular viewer of the family's videos, was shocked and saddened when she heard how young Caleb was. Some are taking to social media to reach out to other fans and to record their own personal tributes. In the video below, viewed more than 41,000 times, YouTuber Brittney_Bribri says, "This is really hard to take in right now. People are saying that it's hackers, but I believe it's real. I don't want to believe it's real, but it's real. It happened."

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In a sad twist, on the day before he died, Caleb filmed a video in which he poses questions to his future self. "Unfortunately Caleb passed away the day after we made this video," it says at the end of the clip. "He will never get to meet his future self. None of us will and we are very sad a because he would have been great. Please kiss your kids and tell them you love them every day. You never know what day will be their last."

The family made the decision, which was met with some controversy, to livestream Caleb's memorial service that took place on Tuesday.

Photograph by: Instagram

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