First, my post over 2 years ago when he first died:
There were several sources, I went with this one as it appeared fairly complete from what I read and heard at other sites when first reported 2 months ago:
But one can read what his wife wrote directly as well:
Some excerpts in there:
“Although not alone, his case was extreme. Not until the coroner’s report, 3 months after his death, would I learn that it was diffuse LBD that took him. All 4 of the doctors I met with afterwards and who had reviewed his records indicated his was one of the worst pathologies they had seen. He had about 40% loss of dopamine neurons and almost no neurons were free of Lewy bodies throughout the entire brain and brainstem.”
And this as well, “Robin was losing his mind and he was aware of it. Can you imagine the pain he felt as he experienced himself disintegrating? And not from something he would ever know the name of, or understand? Neither he, nor anyone could stop it—no amount of intelligence or love could hold it back.
Powerless and frozen, I stood in the darkness of not knowing what was happening to my husband. Was it a single source, a single terrorist, or was this a combo pack of disease raining down on him?
He kept saying, “I just want to reboot my brain.” Doctor appointments, testing, and psychiatry kept us in perpetual motion. Countless blood tests, urine tests, plus rechecks of cortisol levels and lymph nodes. A brain scan was done, looking for a possible tumor on his pituitary gland, and his cardiologist rechecked his heart. Everything came back negative, except for high cortisol levels. We wanted to be happy about all the negative test results, but Robin and I both had a deep sense that something was terribly wrong.
On May 28th, he was diagnosed with Parkinson disease (PD).”
One reason why I write about it now is that Dinah Miller wrote a column about Williams in the November issue of Clinical Psychiatry News, and in there she wrote, “…Robin Williams was suffering from a severe form of an incurable dementing illness, and his wife describes that he was in a great deal of distress with both his symptoms and his decline. This illness is a tragedy, but perhaps his suicide was a rational decision and not a preventable death.”
Her column to read it all:
As Bram Stoker wrote in “Dracula”, there are worse things than death, and dementia is such a fate I would not wish on even people I detest, only because it would further the pain of others around the demented who are trying to make a difference.
I am still sad he is gone, but, knowing what he suffered at the end, I respect his choice, I just wish he could have offered some closure for his family and fans. Someone of such celebrity appeal really does have some obligation to the public who made his career.
But, now we know, and now, we still are a bit sad…
I leave you with one of his best performances that was spontaneous:
I defy anyone to watch this to not laugh uncontrollably at some portions, and this was spontaneous, he was on stage for FIVE hours and the DVD compressed it to just 2 hours?!
Again, missed but beloved!