Beloved comic and Oscar winner Robin Williams died Monday at the age of 63, TVGuide.com has confirmed. Williams died of a suspected suicide, according to a statement from authorities in Marin County, Calif., where Williams was found dead.
According to the statement, Marin County Communications received a 911 call at approximately 11:55 a.m. reporting a male adult had been found unconscious and not breathing inside his residence in Tiburon, Calif. The sheriff's office and the fire department were dispatched to the scene and Williams was pronounced dead at 12:02 p.m.
Police say an investigation is currently underway into Williams' death, which authorities believe was caused by "suicide due to asphyxia." The veteran actor was last seen alive at 10 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 10 at his home. A forensic examination is currently scheduled for Tuesday and subsequent toxicology testing will be conducted.
Williams' publicist, Mara Buxbaum, issued a statement to The Hollywood Reporter on her client's passing. "Robin Williams passed away this morning. He has been battling severe depression of late. This is a tragic and sudden loss. The family respectfully asks for their privacy as they grieve during this very difficult time."
Added his wife, Susan Schneider, in a separate statement: "This morning, I lost my husband and my best friend, while the world lost one of its most beloved artists and beautiful human beings. I am utterly heartbroken. On behalf of Robin's family, we are asking for privacy during our time of profound grief. As he is remembered, it is our hope the focus will not be on Robin's death, but on the countless moments of joy and laughter he gave to millions."
Williams' death comes one month after news surfaced that he had checked back into rehab in a bid to maintain his sober lifestyle. The stage and screen veteran struggled with alcohol and drug addiction, particularly cocaine, for years before giving both up in the 1980s. He entered rehab again in 2006, and had been open about his issues, even using them as material for his comedic routines.
Over the years, Williams married three times and had three children. He was first married to Valerie Velardi from 1978 to 1988. The couple had a son, Zach. Williams had two more children, Zelda and Cody, with his second wife, Marsha Garces, to whom he was married from 1989 to 2008. Williams exchange "I dos" a third time, with Schneider, in 2011.
Williams got his start studying at Juilliard, where he became close friends with Christopher Reeve. The two were the only actors accepted into the famed school's Advanced Program and they stayed close friends. (Williams was reportedly the first to make Reeve laugh after he fell from his horse in 1995 and became a quadriplegic.)
The Chicago native first rose to fame as the star of the beloved 1970s sitcom Mork & Mindy, a spin-off of Happy Days, where we first met Mork, an alien from the planet Ork who aged backward. He continued to do stand-up comedy, including multiple successful comedy specials for HBO, as he graduated from the small to the big screen. Williams, along with his friends Billy Crystal and Whoopi Goldberg, hosted several successful Comic Relief specials starting in 1986 to help raise money for the needy, particularly the homeless. Over the years, the specials raised and distributed nearly $50 million.
Williams showcased his dramatic talents in Good Morning Vietnam the following year. The film, as well as his turns in Dead Poets Society and The Fisher King, earned him Oscar nominations. However, it was 1997's Good Will Hunting that finally won him the gold as Best Supporting Actor for playing a tormented shrink who helps Matt Damon's Will Hunting accept his genius. Other memorable film roles include The Birdcage, Hook, Mrs. Doubtfire, Jumanji and Aladdin, in which he voiced the Genie.
In recent years, Williams had returned to TV for several roles, including playing himself on Louie and Wilfred. Last year, he starred in the CBS comedy The Crazy Ones opposite Sarah Michelle Gellar, which failed to receive a second-season pickup. He still has several films in the pipeline, including the third Night at the Museum movie.
Williams is survived by Schneider and his three children.
A good-natured Williams confessed to us in 2013 that he was a big fan of sci-fi and fantasy TV. See what he says about Khaleesi:If you or someone you know needs help, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).