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Robin Williams – a Giant among us

The three children of comedian Robin Williams were on the pitcher’s mound at the World Series.  Zak Williams, Robin’s son, threw out the first pitch of the game. Robin’s dear friend Billy Crystal acted as catcher. 

As we continue to seek answers to mental illness, the beloved comedian – who died from suicide in August – reminds us of the need to be vigilant and stay close to each other. Mental illness cannot always be detected by those who suffer with it or those who love and stay close. 

If you or someone you know needs help, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

(S-R archive photo: Robin Williams June 15, 2007)

 

Robin Williams ~ RIP

He was outrageously hilarious – and quietly kind. Robin Williams, 63, was found dead on Monday around noon at his Marin County home, north of San Francisco. The cause of death is apparently suicide.

He won an Oscar for “Good Will Hunting;” he played a cross-dresser – trying to win back his children – in “Mrs. Doubtfire.” He arrived from a different planet in “Mork ‘n Mindy.” He entertained troops in “Good Morning, Viet Nam.”

His role in real life was one of father, husband, friend and dedicated American. He entertained troops on tour and then left the stage to find the soldiers who could not attend the big show – the cooks in the mess hall, those standing guard, those caring for wounded.

While his wit rivaled lightning speed, his demons could not be held back by wit or willpower. Williams suffered with depression and addiction. He once told Diane Sawyer nothing causes those urgings to “use.” It is just a little voice that suggests one drink, one use, is okay.

When a friend takes his/her own life, we often ask how we  missed the signs. But mental illness, such as depression, is a demon that dresses up well, an actor unto itself. Easy to miss its presence.

Our grief cannot will Robin Williams back among us. But we can seek greater understanding of mental illness, addiction, and remember the man who brought us laughter in a life filled, especially today, with sadness and pain.

The Butler

Robin Williams as Dwight Eisenhower, left, and Forest Whitaker as Cecil Gaines in a scene from “Lee Daniels’ The Butler.”

“You hear nothing. You see nothing. You only serve.” Such are the instructions Cecil Gaines receives as he embarks on his daunting new job at the Eisenhower White House in “Lee Daniels’ The Butler.”

But of course Gaines, played by Forest Whitaker in a moving, grounded performance that anchors the film and blunts its riskier excesses, hears and sees everything.

And that means that over more than three decades on the job, he has a Forrest Gump-like view not only of the White House under seven presidents, but of the long arc of the civil rights struggle in 20th-century America. More here.

I'm really looking forward to seeing this movie. Do you have a favorite movie you've seen this summer?

 

Barbara Bush & Robin Williams both hospitalized…

Good evening, Netizens…

I read a short while ago that although former First Lady Barbara Bush was hospitalized earlier today and open heart surgery performed, what nearly eluded me was that actor/comedian Robin Williams is also hospitalized in Florida with unnamed heart issues, as well.

According to her husband, Former President George H. W. Bush, Barbara is recovering nicely and is expected to be released soon.

However, there was little mention of Robin Williams, his diagnosis or approximate time of his release, although certain comedy web sites are predicting he has new material from his stay in the hospital for his ”Weapons of Self Destruction” tour underway since September.

Dave