Actor Robin Williams, 63, found dead at California home


Oscar-winning actor and comedian Robin Williams was found dead Monday at his home north of San Francisco, authorities say. Officials suspect Williams died by suicide.

The Marin County sheriff's department released a statement saying dispatchers received a 911 call reporting a man was unresponsive at a residence in Tiburon, Calif.

He was identified as Robin Williams and pronounced dead just after noon. The sheriff's department says the cause and manner of his death are under investigation but added this:

At this time, the Sheriff's Office Coroner Division suspects the death to be a suicide due to asphyxia, but a comprehensive investigation must be completed before a final determination is made.

Williams' wife, Susan Schneider, released a statement later in the day:

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 had been battling severe depression recently, said Mara Buxbaum, his press representative.

The Los Angeles Times reports the Chicago-born Williams was one of only two actors admitted to John Houseman's prestigious acting program at Julliard. He gained fame in the 1970s television sitcom "Mork & Mindy" before starring in a string of successful movies.

Those included "Good Morning, Vietnam," "Dead Poets Society," "The Fisher King," and "Good Will Hunting," for which he won an Academy Award.

Williams will appear in the third Night at the Museum film, due in December, and was set to reprise the role of Mrs. Doubtfire in the sequel to the 1993 movie, according to Time magazine.

Williams spent part of this summer in Minnesota at the Hazelden Addiction Treatment Center. After he was recognized by an employee of a Dairy Queen in Lindstrom and consented to a photo (above) that was posted to Facebook, a representative for Williams confirmed that the actor was at Hazelden to fine-tune his commitment to sobriety.

The Huffington Post reported then that Williams had struggled with substance abuse since the 1980s and had relapsed in 2006 after 20 years of sobriety.

President Obama issued a statement marking Williams' death.

Many actors, entertainers and fans took to social media to express their sadness. Here's a sample:

Here's some video of an appearance Williams made on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson in 1991.

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