Robin Williams may have initially attempted to commit suicide by way of cutting his wrists, according to reports from the Marin County Deputy Coroner. The alleged act was reportedly not successful, leaving only acute superficial cuts, thus prompting Williams to take further action and choose the method of hanging.
The Coroner goes on to explain how Williams then tied a belt around his neck, securing the other end between the closet door and the door frame. He rested his right shoulder against the door with his body in a slightly suspended position, although still seated. His body was discovered by his personal assistant, who became concerned when the actor did not open the door, as they had a scheduled meeting together. After knocking on the window to no response, the assistant let herself into the home, upon which time she discovered the body. No note was left. William’s wife, Susan, was out running errands at the time of the incident. The cause of death of the 63-year-old was ruled as asphyxiation.
The method used in his suicide contains an eerie irony for fans of the actor, considering his role in the 2009 movie World’s Greatest Dad. He played the father of a teen who was obsessed with autoerotica and accidentally dies while engaging in self-asphyxiation. William’s character attempts to cover up the real cause of death by attempting to make it look like a suicide. There is a scene in the movie where his character appears on television to discuss his son’s death, and he does not hide his disdain at those who commit suicide, calling it a misguided solution for temporary problems. The irony may be eerie but it does not in anyway imply that there were actual similarities between the two death scenes, neither real or acted.
William’s death has triggered an outpouring of grief amongst both those who knew him personally and those who adored his work as an actor. Many celebrities have taken to social media to express their shock and sorrow upon learning of his sudden death, and several of these celebrities have delivered personal tributes. Ben Affleck, for instance, released a Facebook statement expressing how heartbroken he was over his Good Will Hunting co-star’s death and how much the actor had changed his life. He attributes the fame attained by him and fellow co-star Matt Damon entirely to Williams, expressing his eternal gratitude for who he calls the man who gave him everything. United States President Barack Obama gave a statement shortly after the news of the actor’s death broke, thanking him for his USO service over the years, and recalling the actor’s extreme generosity to those who needed it most.
Robin is survived by his third wife, Susan Schneider, and his three children; Zachary, Cody, and Zelda. Just two weeks before his death, he took to Instagram to post a throwback picture of himself with his daughter as a toddler, in celebration of her 25th birthday. Zelda posted a heartbreaking tweet shortly after her father’s death, giving tribute to her father’s life by way of a quote from the book The Little Prince by Antoine De Saint-Exupery.
Plans for the actor’s burial and/or memorial service have not been released yet. However, it is clear that Robin Williams touched the lives of many, and for this he will be remembered.
Opinion by Rebecca Grace