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Culture Robin Williams' widow says actor had early stages of Parkinson's

Robin Williams’ widow says actor had early stages of Parkinson’s

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Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

 

By Emily Yahr (c) 2014, The Washington Post.

Days after Robin Williams’ death, people are looking for answers about why the beloved entertainer would take his own life. On Thursday, his wife, Susan Schneider, released a statement that said Williams was in the early stages of Parkinson’s disease when he died.

“Robin’s sobriety was intact and he was brave as he struggled with his own battles of depression, anxiety as well as early stages of Parkinson’s Disease, which he was not ready to share publicly,” Schneider said.

Already this week, rumors have been flying about Williams’s alleged troubles, from money issues to reports that he started drinking again. Williams, 63, had battled alcohol addiction for years, and he briefly spent time in a rehabilitation facility this summer.

Williams’s representative, Mara Buxbaum, also said the actor had no financial problems, telling TheWrap, “We should be blessed to have Robin’s financial status.”

On Tuesday, investigators confirmed that a preliminary investigation revealed Williams died of suicide from hanging due to asphyxia. An official cause of death and toxicology report will be released in the next several weeks.

Schneider’s full statement:

“Robin spent so much of his life helping others. Whether he was entertaining millions on stage, film or television, our troops on the frontlines, or comforting a sick child – Robin wanted us to laugh and to feel less afraid.

“Since his passing, all of us who loved Robin have found some solace in the tremendous outpouring of affection and admiration for him from the millions of people whose lives he touched. His greatest legacy, besides his three children, is the joy and happiness he offered to others, particularly to those fighting personal battles.

“Robin’s sobriety was intact and he was brave as he struggled with his own battles of depression, anxiety as well as early stages of Parkinson’s Disease, which he was not yet ready to share publicly.

“It is our hope in the wake of Robin’s tragic passing, that others will find the strength to seek the care and support they need to treat whatever battles they are facing so they may feel less afraid.”

 

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