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Heath's Family: He Did Not Kill Himself

1/22/2008 9:52 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

TMZ has been contacted by a rep from Heath's family. The cops told the family Heath's death was accidental and there is no evidence to support the buzz that he may have committed suicide.

They are particularly distraught over media reports that he may have taken his own life. The family says he was not that kind of person.

As we just reported, Heath was ill with pneumonia when he died.


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An Insider    

OK, I can say that Heath most definitely did not die from AIDS as #56 said. He took out a large life insurance policy last summer which would've required an HIV test as well as drug testing. Since the policy was issued, he must've tested negative and clean for drugs (other than cigarettes) and had no recent history of drug or alcohol abuse.

Of course the family says accidental... no one will get the insurance money if it was suicide. I'll wait for the autopsy before rushing to judgment.

2466 days ago


Wow, He had it all.Dont assume, lets wait and find out.Id rather be rich than famous.Famous must suck,no personal life,
its all out there and mostly made up,Wow

2466 days ago


My heart goes out to heath's family...I'm very sorry for your loss....RIP CHILD...YOU ARE WITH GOD AND THE ANGELS NOW AND FREE OF ANY PAIN AND SUFFERING....

2466 days ago


Just read what his parents said -- "He is not that kind of person." WHAT kind of person? The kind of person who kills themselves? First, my heart goes out to you because I am so sorry for your loss. I loved Heath as an actor and I adored him the first time I saw him in The Patriot. If it had been suicide, which I do not think it was, I would hope that you would not be ashamed. The majority of suicides are committed by people who have untreated or undertreated Depression. Like my nephew at age 22 and my brother at age 53. Mt family is predisposed to the illness and we must take it seriously. I myself have been treated for it for nearly 14 years. Since I discovered that it runs in my family, I became an advocate forthose with a mental illness, volunteering and teaching classes to educate family mebers about the many illnesses that can lead to suicide. I do this through the National Alliance for mental Illness. For #13 -- (13. #9 - Suicide does make it much worse, trust me. It's much worse to think that a loved one just couldn't take life anymore and decided to take the selfish way out without thinking about his family.) -- when a person is suicidal, their illness does not allow them to think clearly or rationally. They have lost all hope that their situation can change and they give up on life out of helplessness and despair. I know this is true without a doubt because if my nephew and my brother were in their rational minds, they would still be here. They would never have hurt us like that on purpose. It may seem "selfish", but they cannot think about anything but the pain. My brother would never have left his little granddaughter if he was not sick. Both had Major Depression. My nephew was undiagnosed (in retrospect we could see the signs so clearly.) He shot himself and I was there when it happened. He lived for five days and my family never left his side until they removed him form life support. My brother, as were all of us, was devastated by the death our our beloved mother only 8 months before. He hung himself and was found on December 9th, 2001. He was one of the strongest men I have ever known in my life. He also knew that our younger brother was dying due to complications from AIDS. They were extrememly close and in his weakened state of mind my brother couldn't handle it. Everyone has their breaking point. My younger brother died 11 days after my older brother -- on December 20, 2001. The next year I lost my father. Please remember that mental illness can affect any one -- it doesn't matter who you are. I have so much compassion for anyone touched by any one of the many types of illness. It is not their fault. It does not mean they have a flaw in their character, and it definately doesn't mean they are weak or cowardly. It's the only way they know to stop the pain. Have you ever wished you were dead? I think we all have at one time or another, but could we do it? I don't think so. Well, imagine how much strength it must take to want to die and then actually do it. Imagine how strong your pain has to be. I miss my family soooo much. I don't think I'll ever "get over" their deaths -- especially the suicides. That kind of grief is like nothing I can even attempt to explain to you. With God's help, I have determined to keep it from happening again in my family, and in any other family I can reach.

Forgive me for going on so long. My words should be only for Heath's family. Once again...I am so very very sorry for your loss.
from complications from AIDS and it was tearing him apart.

2466 days ago


the findings of the autopsy report (or the "official" version which will be released/acknowledged by his PR) are also probably negotiable because what does it matter at this point? the family/pr can oversee what's released to the public.

i just have much trouble with the idea that ledger, who i believe was a very fine actor and a seemingly invincible young man, would be careless enough to accidentally mix medications given his affluent private school background and his general, worldly familiarities. also, the abrupt volte-faced response of purported insiders from "saw it coming" to "would never do such a thing" seems to be simple pandering to the family's wishes.

horrible, horrible tragedy across the board -- shocking; devastating. RIP, Heath Ledger.

2466 days ago

my heart aches for his family    

It doesn't matter if he committed suicide or died of pneumonia...he's dead either's still just as sad,,,

Noone I know thought my mum would commit suicide either but the noose didn't put its self around her neck...

2466 days ago


#93 and 100 - Thank you so much for your educated comments. I too am a survivor and found the comments terribly offensive. I posted a note about it but I don't see that it has shown up. I lost a 22 year-old nephew and my brother who was a year older than me to Depression and suicide.

2466 days ago


It's not so much HOW he died that matters as much as it is THAT he died.

2466 days ago

my heart aches for his family    

126. "no one will get the insurance money if it was suicide"

My mum committed suicide and we still got the life insurence. Some places still give it as long as there was a certain amount of time between the policy being taken out and the death.

2466 days ago


Wow. out of all the actors in Hollywood he's the last one that I would have though of as dead. What a sad way to start 2008. My respects to his family, especially his very young daughter.

2466 days ago

heather siron    

how sad! i loved him in 10 things i hate about you,and a knights tale especially! my prayers go out to his family and michelle and his daughter mathilda. if he had pneumonia and had been filming a movie to he was tired and weak taking sleeping pills when his lungs were struggling with the illness perhaps caused him to passout face down and suffocate? regardless of the autopsy reports he is gone to soon and will be missed.

2466 days ago


For those of you posting negative comments about Heath Ledger right now, you should be ashamed. A young man's life has just been lost. Whether on purpose or by accident does not matter. It is still a tragedy. Any decent human being would keep their personal opinions about Heath and his career to themselves during such a time. Our hearts should go out to the the ones left behind who personally knew and loved Heath and we can only hope the he knew God and his loved ones can find some sort of peace in such a sad time.

2466 days ago


I have felt totally sad all day. I feel sorry for Matilda who will never kiss or cuddle her daddy again. All of us here in western australia are very devistated. RIP Heath... My thoughts go out to his wonderful family, Michelle and Matilda. Like Tigerlilly, you will only know your father through film and clips, and other peoples memories, you will not be able to build ones of your own. Please TMZ no crappy footage...

2466 days ago


HEATH LEDGER ,deceased 1 DAY and theories abound.IS THIS A SOCIAL ruse or will we ,stop reporting ,POSSIBLE DEMISES of people of interest.OTHERS DIED ,yeterday ,for many reasons ,in many ways.IM not coldhearted ,just CYNICAL of embracing DEATH ,AS readons to communicate.LETS report life AND good news .ANYONE LIVE TODAY.YES ,now im gratified.SORRY for being othe side of MUNDANE LIFE and ANTI MACABRE DEATH ,in all ways

2466 days ago

Brenda Anshanslin    

"We are deeply saddened and shocked by this accident," said publicist Mara Buxbaum in a statement, regarding the sudden death of Heath Ledger, 28.

By now we have all heard the story and by now you are more than likely, tired of hearing about it.
Yet something is sickening and striking to me, and I am tired of staying mum.

Heath Ledger, died and it is tragic, he possibly had a bright future ahead of him and a beautiful daughter, yet to call his death an accident is just a disgusting and flashy anti-hero type of lie. Drug abuse is never an accident. It is a conscious choice that each user and addict makes. Each addict and "casual user" is completly aware of the consequences; and Hollywood's drive to glamorize it as an accident is disturbing.

Drug abuse, no matter the nature, is like playing Russian Roulette. One knows the game, the rules and the tragic out come. In the end, somebody is going to die and somebody is going to be held responsible. In this case Ledger was the "loser" and his doctor with be the one held responsible.

My baby brother chose to play this druggist version of Russian Roulette, and he died. It was December 12, 2004 exactly one month before his nineteenth birthday. My baby brother decided that he didn't want to deal with life, that he needed an "escape". This need cost him his life and along with that life, a bit of our own lives.

By calling these deaths accidental, like Heath Ledger, Anna Nicole Smith and even Ike Turner, all we are doing is informing people from all generations that dying from drugs happens only to those who aren't cautious. Letting the user believe that they can continue to do it, because they won't become depressed, they won't become suicidal, after prolonged use, because they aren't stupid. Yet if you ask me, drug use in itself is pretty damn dumb.

Currently we are building the ego's of "out of control celebs" and watching them spin to their deaths.
Come on everyone!
Wake Up!
Let's ban together, no matter how hard it is, and stop buying the tabloid magazines that constantly print photographs of celebrities under the influence and those who are known to be using. Stop attending movies, buying albums, downloading photographs, and visiting web sites linked to these celebrities! Then write them, write them constantly, do what you can to insure that they stop, so that at least we can say that we tried to stop them, that we did something. You never know, saving one celebrity life could save the life of an average person like you and me.
Brenda Anshanslin, 25

2466 days ago
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