There are reports that Tonia Nicole Melnyk passed away November 14th, 2018. She was 43. To the public, she was better known as indie film actress and model Syn DeVil.

There is some speculation that she took her own life. I do not know if this is true; I have no facts. I am simply stating what little is out there. As someone that met her in person in 2006 – and enjoyed her work – this news saddens me.

Originally from the New York/New Jersey area, Tonia had over 24 horror movie credits to her name. She worked mostly in the Northern East Coast, before moving to Arizona to be the spokesperson for Brain Damage Films. She was very fond of THE WITCHES SABBATH, where she had a lead role.

She seemed to have retired from acting around 2010 (her last IMDb entry). Not much is known about the time between then and 2017. Within the last year she had launched a Youtube channel. There as Syn DeVil she talked heavily about the Gothic lifestyle. This included everything from jewelry to makeup to wardrobe. 

Tonia was very open and honest about her life, talking about her loneliness as a child, being bullied in school, and having anxiety and abandonment issues. There was a sadness to some of her videos, as she lamented on good versus bad choices that she had made.

Summer of 2018 found her ill, but she returned to making videos in September. At this point she appeared shaky and a little puffy. In one of her last videos she discusses her career and some of her favorite movies and roles.

I was terribly sorry to hear of her death. Having talked to a few people that had worked with her, she was a friendly person that hadn’t hurt anyone. It makes one wish that someone could have reached out to her, talked to her, hugged her and taken away the pain and emptiness she felt. 

This tribute is my small way of remembering a person that had some hard knocks and broken dreams dealt to her. It’s my way of saying that Tonia had people in her life that cared, and really enjoyed her work. I wish she had had an easier life.

Rest In Peace, Tonia. You will be missed.