08252014Headline:

The Great Robin Williams Dead at 63

Relatives, showbiz personalities and politicians have expressed their sadness at the death of Robin Williams, who has died at the age of 63 in a suspected suicide.

The Oscar-winning actor was found dead at his home in northern California, according to the Marin County Sheriff’s Office.

Williams’ wife Susan Schneider said in a statement: “This morning, I lost my husband and my best friend, while the world lost one of its most beloved and beautiful human beings. I am utterly heartbroken.”

His daughter Zelda Williams posted an excerpt from the French poet and aviator Antoine de Saint-Exupery, which read: “You – you alone will have the stars as no one else has them … In one of the stars I shall be living.”

She added: “I love you. I miss you. I’ll try to keep looking up.”

The star of much-loved films including Mrs Doubtfire and Good Morning, Vietnam had been struggling with severe depression in recent weeks, according to Williams’ press agent Mara Buxbaum.

A statement from President Barack Obama described the actor as “one of a kind”.

“Robin Williams was an airman, a doctor, a genie, a nanny, a president, a professor, a bangarang Peter Pan, and everything in between. But he was one of a kind,” he said.

“He arrived in our lives as an alien – but he ended up touching every element of the human spirit. He made us laugh. He made us cry.

“He gave his immeasurable talent freely and generously to those who needed it most – from our troops stationed abroad to the marginalised on our own streets.

“The Obama family offers our condolences to Robin’s family, his friends, and everyone who found their voice and their verse thanks to Robin Williams.”

Many celebrity colleagues and admirers took to Twitter to express their shock at the actor’s death, and to pay tribute to Williams’ large and well-respected body of work.

Pam Dawber, his co-star in Mork and Mindy, said: “I am completely and totally devastated. What more can be said?”

Film director Ron Howard recalled that he saw Mork’s genesis as they worked together on the US series Happy Days.

In a message posted online, he said: “We lost Robin – first witnessed his genius as he created Mork before our eyes in two hours on set. A Force. A Sweet Soul. A Brilliant Artist.”

Comedian and actor Billy Connolly, a close friend of Williams, said: “Robin was both my friend and my hero, a unique talent and a kind and generous man; the world will be a much poorer place without him.”

Steven Spielberg, who worked with Williams on Hook, said: “Robin was a lightning storm of comic genius and our laughter was the thunder that sustained him.  He was a pal and I can’t believe he’s gone.”

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