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Robin Williams diagnosed with early stages of Parkinson's disease

LOS ANGELES, CA - AUGUST 12: Hollywood Chamber of Comerce President & CEO Leron Gubler places Flowers on Robin Williams Hollywood Walk of Fame star on August 12, 2014 in Los Angeles, California.
LOS ANGELES, CA - AUGUST 12: Hollywood Chamber of Comerce President & CEO Leron Gubler places Flowers on Robin Williams Hollywood Walk of Fame star on August 12, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. Photo by Valerie Macon/Getty Images

Reports on Robin Williams confirm that he was sober when he took his own life. However, fans can't help but wonder why Robin took his own life. He had a hidden secret, which may have pushed him into the deep, dark, depressive state he couldn't escape.

Robin's wife, Susan Schneider, issued a written statement in which she revealed that Robin had a health problem. He was diagnosed with the early stages of Parkinson’s disease. She wrote; "Robin's sobriety was intact and he was brave as he struggled with his own battles of depression, anxiety as well as early stages of Parkinson's disease, which he was not yet ready to share publicly.”

According to a family friend, Robin was not only dealing with depression, but he had this disabling disease added to it. The friend told CNN that this gave Robin, "an additional fear and burden in his life."

This could explain a lot of what Robin was going through at that time. He is a comedian, known for his humor, funny faces, and gestures. Parkinson’s disease changes all that. It takes away a person’s ability to control his or her own body. The National Parkinson Foundation tells how the disease gradually takes over the person’s body. It prevents the person’s brain to stop making dopamine. This is a vital part of your body’s functioning because it helps your mood and it helps your body move.

At first it begins by affecting the person’s posture, it messes with their balance and it causes abnormal facial expressions. Everyday tasks that were easily accomplished become more difficult. The person begins to have tremors in one of their limbs.

According to the person familiar with Robin and his family, when Robin had stress in his life, or when he was depressed, he would often exercise or do some cycling. Parkinson would take away his ability to do this.

Susan's statement went on to say, “Robin spent so much of his life helping others. Whether he was entertaining millions on stage, film or television, our troops on the frontlines, or comforting a sick child — Robin wanted us to laugh and to feel less afraid.

Since his passing, all of us who loved Robin have found some solace in the tremendous outpouring of affection and admiration for him from the millions of people whose lives he touched. His greatest legacy, besides his three children, is the joy and happiness he offered to others, particularly to those fighting personal battles.

"It is our hope in the wake of Robin's tragic passing, that others will find the strength to seek the care and support they need to treat whatever battles they are facing so they may feel less afraid."

Perhaps now, Robin's friends and fans can better understand what he was going through at the time of his passing. Our prayers and condolences go out to the remaining family at this time.