I feel sad about the death of Heath Ledger. He was a gifted actor with such promise. I feel deeply sorry for his family as they wait for the coroner’s verdict while enduring the speculation of the press, circling like hawks for the one word that will send them into a frenzy – suicide.
I have experienced suicide and ‘death by accidental overdose’ up close. There is nothing easy about either state. Questions plague those who remain. How could he not know how much he was taking? Why didn’t I see he was depressed? Why didn’t he ask me for help? What were his thoughts in his final moments? Why did he feel he had no one to turn to? Why did he do it? Why? Why? Why?
I feel pain for Heath Ledger’s family because I know some of those questions can never be answered. My cousin Patrick’s death was deemed ‘accidental’ and it hangs just as heavy on his family’s heart as a conclusion of ‘suicide’ would have done.
Often, we view the life of these celebrities, actors, musicians with an envious eye. Many of us feel well-known, successful actors have nothing to complain about. But they are people who live and breathe as we do. They ache as we do. Their families and loved ones feel their loss as acutely as we feel the loss of one of our own.
Farewell, Heath. Peace to you and your family.