Over the last decade, we have witnessed many shocking celebrity deaths. From Robin Williams, to Cory Monteith, to Paul Walker, Brittany Murphy and Heath Ledger, we have tragically lost some of the most talented and dedicated individuals in Hollywood.
These beloved actors were taken away from us far before their time, but let us take comfort that they leave behind them a rich legacy and some of the best films of recent times.
Let's fondly look at some of the names we have lost and remind ourselves of the reasons behind their heart-breaking deaths:
1. Robin Williams
When? August 11, 2014
How? Robin Williams tragically committed suicide in his home in California at the age of 63. He had hanged himself with a belt and died from asphyxiation. Neither alcohol nor drugs were involved but it was reported that around that time, the actor was suffering from an "increase in paranoia." Upon investigating his brain, medical professionals revealed the presence of "Lewy body dementia."
Williams will remain one of the most legendary actors to come out of Hollywood. The list of his achievements is endless and his outstanding performances will never be forgotten. We love you Robin!
2. Paul Walker
When? November 30, 2013
How? Paul Walker left an event for his Reach Out Worldwide charity in his friend's red 2005 Porsche Carrerra GT. Speeding down Kelly Johnson Parkway in Santa Clarita, California, the car crashed into a concrete lamppost and two trees. Following the collision, the vehicle burst into flames with both Walker and his friend Roger Rodis trapped inside. Both victims were declared dead at the scene, with the actor dying from combined effects of traumatic and thermal injuries. According to reports, both bodies were burned beyond recognition.
The coroner's report claimed that no alcohol or drugs were involved in the crash, but that the car was traveling at an incredibly high speed of 160 km/h. In March 2014, it was confirmed that this was the only reason for the crash.
Paul Walker was one of the nicest actors in the profession and will be sadly missed. Check him out in all of his bad-ass glory in 2 Fast 2 Furious:
3. Brittany Murphy
When? December 20, 2009
How? Murphy supposedly collapsed at her Los Angeles home and although medics tried to resuscitate her on the scene, she died a couple of hours after going into cardiac arrest. In February 2010, the coroner finally a released a report that claimed that she had been taking a wide range of over-the-counter and prescription medication that led to multiple drug intoxication and iron-deficiency anemia.
Since her tragic death, she has been terribly missed and is most well-known for her roles in Girl, Interrupted, Riding in Cars with Boys and of course, Clueless. Take a look at her iconic ugly duckling Tai Frasier in the short clip below:
4. Philip Seymour Hoffmann
When? February 2, 2014
How? Hoffman has starred in award-winning films since the early '90s until his death at the age of 46. Struggling with drug addiction in his youth, he relapsed in 2013 after years of sobriety. In February 2014, he died of severe drug intoxication and was found in the bathroom of his apartment in Manhattan. Detectives found heroin and prescription medication at the scene and discovered him with a syringe in his arm. His death has been repeatedly described as an incredible loss for the acting profession.
At the time of filming, Hoffman was filming The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2. Check him out in the Catching Fire installment:
5. Cory Monteith
When? July 13, 2013
How? The Glee star was found dead in his room at a hotel in Vancouver. He was meant to have checked out, but when he failed to do so, hotel staff discovered his body around midday. The final autopsy report confirmed that he had died from "a mixed drug toxicity" consisting of heroin and alcohol. Supposedly, he also had codeine and morphine in his blood system at the time of death.
Throughout his life, Monteith has struggled with drug abuse. His body was cremated a few days later, following a private ceremony with his family and his then on-screen girlfriend Lea Michele.
Listen to his beautiful voice in this video:
6. Heath Ledger
When? January 22, 2008
How? Heath Ledger was found unconscious in his bed by his housekeeper and his masseuse, Diana Wolozin, in Manhattan. According to reports, Wolozin arrived early for an appointment and called Ledger's friend Mary-Kate Olsen for help, who directed her private security to go to the scene. At the same time, paramedic arrived but failed to revive him. When the autopsy report came through, it was concluded that:
"Mr. Heath Ledger died as the result of acute intoxication by the combined effects of oxycodone, hydrocodone, diazepam, temazepam, alprazolam and doxylamine [...] We have concluded that the manner of death is accident, resulting from the abuse of prescribed medications."
Such high-profile tragedies really do remind us that life is really quite futile and that even the most successful people on the planet do not escape Death's clutches.
Each and every one of these wonderful actors or actresses will be sorely missed and their legacies continue to live in their dedication to the profession.
Who else should have been included in the list?
Which celebrity do you miss the most?