Max Barry, 22, died in Littleton, Colorado, where he had recently moved after graduating from college in Washington state.
The Barrys, who were notified of their son’s death early Sunday, said in a statement it’s the kind of news no parent should ever have to hear.
“We cannot begin to describe the pain and heartbreak that comes with losing our only child,” the couple said.
“Our son was a kind soul full of life and love for his family and friends.”
The Barrys also said they’re trying to come to terms with the loss.
"Our family would greatly appreciate your thoughts and prayers, and would respectfully ask for privacy as we mourn the loss of our child and begin to understand a world without his laughter and love in our lives."
Max Barry was described by family friends as a “happy kid growing up,” with
"an enormous personality," “smart” and “empathetic, according to USA Today.
“This is an unfathomable tragedy,” Max’s former teacher Dean Masullo told the newspaper.
The Barrys have received an outpouring of support.
"This is a terrible tragedy that no family should have to suffer," Nashville U.S. Rep. Jim Cooper said. "My heart goes out to Megan and Bruce.”
“Our hearts break for Mayor Megan Barry. Please keep her family in your thoughts,”
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio tweeted.
“No parent should ever live to see the passing of a child,"Nashville Sheriff Darron Hall said. “Family & I send thoughts & prayers to Mayor Megan Barry.”
“Grieving tonight with Mayor Megan Barry and Bruce Barry for the death of their son Max. Our hearts break with yours,” actress Connie Britton tweeted.
An official cause of death won’t be available until the results of a toxicology report are in.
The Barrys announced a visitation is set for Max Barry on Monday in Nashville.
A memorial service is scheduled for Tuesday at a Nashville theater.