Fans in Hollywood and everywhere are experiencing shock over the sudden death of beloved Oscar winning actor and comedian Robin Williams. Considered a comedic genius, Williams is known for his wild antics, dozens of impersonations and spontaneous physical comedy as well as critically acclaimed dramatic roles. But as funny as he was, he could not make himself happy.
The actor took his own life Monday morning, by hanging himself in his Bay Area home near Napa Valley. However, a final ruling will be made once toxicology reports and interviews with witnesses are complete. He was discovered by a personal assistant, with a belt around his neck, dangling from his bedroom closet. His wife left earlier that morning while Williams was presumed to be asleep.
Williams’ bout with depression and substance abuse was well known. Mrs. Williams said her husband had been severely depressed before he died and was undergoing treatment. The condition of the body indicated Williams had been dead for at least several hours, Marin County Sheriff Lt. Keith Boyd said. Williams also had superficial cuts on his wrist, and a pocketknife was found nearby. Boyd would not say whether the actor left a suicide note.
Williams’ acting career took off in the 1980’s on the sitcom “Mork and Mindy.” He soon began acting on the big screen, turning out impressive dramatic roles. He remained clean and sober from 1986 to 2006—the longest stretch of his career. All of his Academy Award nominations came during that period: He won the 1997 Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for his role as Dr. Sean Maguire in "Good Will Hunting," and picked up Best Actor nominations for "Good Morning, Vietnam," in 1987, for "Dead Poets Society" in 1989, and for "The Fisher King" in 1991.
He will be remembered by younger generations for such films as “Mrs. Doubtfire”, “Flubber,” “Aladdin,” and “Jumanji.
In 2009, Williams underwent open-heart surgery at the Cleveland Clinic to replace two valves and regulate his heartbeat. According to the clinic, major heart surgery often leaves patients with depression, which can sometimes "prevent you from leading a normal life."
Williams returned to rehab last month — this time, he said, not because he'd relapsed again, but because he wanted to make sure his recovery stuck.
Comments from fans and fellow actors Billy Crystal, Ben Affleck, Sally Field, Glenn Close and many others were posted on Twitter. Longtime friend Whoopi Goldberg, tweeted, “BillyCrystal is right...There are No words.”
Williams was 63.