World loses a 'beautiful human being' after Robin Williams' death

Photo edited by Anjel Schoenberg
I think that some people are really good at making others happy...yet they don't know how to do the same thing for themselves.

 I will always remember one of the first suicides I ever reported on for The Oakland Press, a family member told me the teen who killed himself was always helping others and always trying to make other people happy.

"But he didn't save any for himself," she said.

 I believe that's what happened to Robin Williams.

After hearing about his death, my friend Zac Wieber described it best — "Your sadness may have overcome you, but the laughter you brought helped many to overcome theirs."

In a written statement on Monday afternoon, Williams' wife said, "This morning, I lost my husband and my best friend, while the world lost one of its most beloved artists and beautiful human beings."

The esteemed actor was found dead on Monday, and a preliminary investigation showed his cause of death to be a suicide due to asphyxia.

AP photo
If this doesn't show that mental illness doesn't discriminate, I don't know what does. When you imagine the characteristics of someone who dies from suicide, "comedian" is probably not one of the words you would think of. Robin Williams made a career making others laugh. Yet, for years, he battled severe
depression — maybe even for decades.

It broke my heart to hear about Williams' death last night. I grew up watching his films, and always thought he was one of the most talented actors who ever lived. He made me laugh in "Mrs. Doubtfire" and cry in "Patch Adams," and he put so much emotion and heart into every one of his performances.

Staci Lempert Pawloski wrote on The Oakland Press' Facebook page today: "I will miss everything about him, every role he played he poured so much of himself into. ... I hope he truly knew how much he meant to us all."

The truth is, sometimes people do everything they can to treat mental illness but, like a tumor, it spreads and spreads until it ultimately takes the person's life. For Williams, he did seek help. He recently spent several weeks at Hazelden Addiction Treatment Center in Minnesota.

To me, this shows that he really wanted to get better. He didn't want to die, and he didn't want to leave him family behind. But, at age 63, the pain became too much for him. I don't want anyone to ever think of him as weak because he's not. He died from a disease. And it's no one's fault.

I hope that, right now as I write this blog entry, he is looking down at us from Heaven and seeing how many people loved him and how many people's lives he changed for the better.

For those suffering from depression, there is treatment available, and people waiting to help and show you that you are not alone. Please, don't give up on life, but instead, do everything you can to fight for it. For Michigan residents, call nonprofit Common Ground's 24-hour crisis line at 1-800-231-1127. Outside of Michigan, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

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