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Heath's Dad on Cause -- "Drugs Proved Lethal"

2/6/2008 12:56 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Heath Ledger's father has issued a statement following the release of the Medical Examiner's report:
Heath and Dad
"We remain humble as parents and a family, among millions of people worldwide who may have suffered the tragic loss of a child. Few can understand the hollow, wrenching, and enduring agony parents silently suffer when a child predeceases them. Today's results put an end to speculation, but our son's beautiful spirit and enduring memory will forever remain in our hearts.

While no medications were taken in excess, we learned today the combination of doctor-prescribed drugs proved lethal for our boy. Heath's accidental death serves as a caution to the hidden dangers of combining prescription medication, even at low dosage.

Our family enjoyed an extremely happy two week visit with Heath just prior to the New Year. Those recent precious days will stay with us forever. We as a family feel privileged to have some of his amazing magic moments captured in film. To most of the world Heath was an actor of immeasurable talent and promise. To those who knew him personally, Heath was a consummate artist whose passions also included photography, music, chess and directing. We knew Heath as a loving father, as our devoted son, and as a loyal and generous brother and friend.

We treasure our beautiful granddaughter Matilda (to our dear Michelle) as well as an unbelievably wonderful network of close friends, forever, around the world. Families rarely experience the uplifting, warm and massive outpouring of grief and support as have we, from every corner of the planet. This has deeply and profoundly touched our hearts and lives. We are eternally grateful.

At this moment we respectfully request the worldwide media allow us time to grieve privately, without the intrusions associated with press and photography.

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Lisaaaaaa, I don't think he killed himself. I was so shocked when I heard he was dead. So sad. It is something we see way too often now. Of course I've made errors in judgment and thankfully they haven't cost me anything. For Heath, we can't say the same and its shameful. And we can't cut him slack because he's gone for good now...

2451 days ago


Look the guy was an idiot, he killed himself by his own stupidity. The guy was a walking medicine cabinet and no one needs to be taking that many medications at the same time -- unless you need to be hospitalized.

2451 days ago

Scott Dred    

This is way too much attention for this guy. Did he really need all those drugs? And why was he prescribed Vicodin and Oxycontin, nobody has said anything about him having problems with pain. He's just another fool celebrity who thought he can do whatever he wants and get away with it.

If he loved his daughter so much he would have been with her and the mother instead of getting whacked out of his gourd with drugs and ordering up a masseusse.

2451 days ago

bren bren    

I think Heath Ledger was a great and talented actor beyond his years. I f you have seen Brokeback Mountain and you see the emotion he put into his charector, it is undescribable. When somebody famous dies, why is it constantly a circus. like regular people we need to grieve in our own ways.. why does the papparazzi keep pushing cameras in his dads face. That i think is disgraceful and sick to want to see a grown man upset over the loss of his child.

2451 days ago


I am saddned by today's report of how Heath Ledger died. It is heartbreaking for is famiy....friends...and all his fans. It's a loss for us, even though we didn't pesonally know him, we did get to know his famous characters, and we will miss him.

And for those that are harping on TMZ.....lay off. They are doing ther job of reporting news. They aren't camped out taking rediculou pics......and they do have this forum here, for us to leave comments, so this way we can get out our feelings and thoughts........remember freedom of speech?

God Bless you, Heath.

2451 days ago


Missy, you're repeating yourself. Why don't you go and take your meds....

2451 days ago


Already took them baby, this is as good as it gets! I was actually going to apologise to you because after rereading the posts I realised my initial post was meant for #8, the one above you. But since you seem to be every bit the douchebag I initially thought you were, well I feel no need now.

2451 days ago


I don't understand all the bickering about this....a man is dead...a son, a brother a friend and a very talented actor. Unless you have walked in the shoes of a bereaved parent, you can never understand the devastation. Stop harping on whether it was accidental or not....let the man rest in peace....and say a prayer for his parents and loved ones. No one knows the pain of losing a child unless you have......I lost my daughter, 9 years ago...and it hurts to this day and will for the rest of MY life....

2451 days ago


When will doctors and pharmacists be held accountable for these mistakes? i know whenever i go to the doctor or pharmacist they always ask me what i'm taking, and if there is a problem with the prescribed drugs, they phone the doctor immediately to correct it or tell me not to take certain ones together. if they had done there job right and informed him that mixing those drugs would be hazardous, heath, and many other celebs (ex. anna nicole) would still be here. Why didn't any warning bells go off? This death was perventable which makes it all the more horiffic for his family and friends.

2451 days ago

Scott Dred    

I went back and read some of the other posts and a lot of you people that are praising this guy seem like freaks. Quit idol worshipping! Most of the young celebrities today are only mildly talented and are only made famous by stupid saps like Missy.

I'm sure Missy is probably some fool teenager sitting in her room dreaming of coming to Hollywood and being a movie star and shopping on Robertson Blvd. after having lunch with Brad Pitt at the Ivy.

That's it girl, keep dreaming...Work that red carpet in your mind.

2451 days ago


Missy you should talk. You were the one who came on this blog doing the attacking. Aren't you a resident of the US? It's freedom of speech you imbecile. See, that's why I can call you imbecile.

2451 days ago

sunday marchand    

My prayers go out to his family. I myself am a grieving mother. I found my son non responsive at age 22 in his bed just a month earlier, however we are still awaiting autopsy results, but are aware already that a combination of drugs were present as well. It is a mothers worst nightmare to find your baby dead. I haven't stopped crying since the morning of December 20, 2007. I will never be the same. Pain,guilt, anger. all emotions daily. Keep praying thats all we can do!!

2451 days ago


I am a 35 year old mother of a 10 and 2 year old who runs her own business and cares for a hadicapped person 24 hours a day in my home. I am also a person who feels things like this are all a tradgedy (same with steve irwin) and cannot stand when people spit vile about people who are dead no matter how they die. That's all, you do have the freedom of speech as do I, I know because my husband fights for it every day as a member of the armed forces. The phelps clan has freedom of speech too, that does not make what they have to say any less disgusting or disputable.

2451 days ago

Sorry that it's happened to another one    

I realize that Ledger's father is grieving, but no amount of spin about "low dosage" of 6 different "prescription medications" is going to fool any thinking person. Heath Ledger was clearly abusing drugs.

Also, it was certainly fine of Ledger's Dad to quote the words of "Tennyson" in his speech referring to a candle burning at both ends, but unfortunately, Tennyson did not pen those words; it was Edna St. Vincent Millay.

Rest in Peace, Heath Ledger.

2451 days ago


The vast majority of OxyContin-related deaths are attributed to ingesting substantial quantities of oxycodone in combination with another depressant of the central nervous system such as alcohol or benzodiazepines.

Oxycontin = Oxycodone (or Percocet/Percodan if combined with aspirin - and the report doesn't specify what type of oxycodone he took)

2451 days ago
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