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Robin Williams of northern California dead by suspected suicide at 63

Robin Williams is dead at 63. Authorities in Marin County of the north San Francisco Bay suspect suicide as the death was reportedly by asphyxiation. He was found at home. Autopsy scheduled for tomorrow, August 12. Media reports that a 911 call came from the home this morning and the police determined the death after two minutes.

Williams has three productions in post-production. He stars with Ben Stiller in another "Night at the Museum" this installment called "Secret of the Tomb" with the action going outside the museum into the streets of London. Williams plays Teddy Roosevelt.

Many grew up watching Williams who would become an Oscar winner after gaining notoriety on network television in 1982 as an alien living with a pretty young single woman, 'Mork & Mindy' (1982). He was on "Happy Days" the 1950s retro series in 1978 and 1979 as Mork.

He has played disturbed people such as a photo department processor stalking a housewife who submitted photos for development, that was "One Hour Photo". He also played a homeless and disturbed man in the film 'The Fisher King'. He is also known for the poignant fantasy, "What Dreams May Come" in which many local Bay Area background actors performed. He was said to be wonderful with the extras and would talk to them and entertain them between takes.

There was "Insomnia".

There was "Mrs. Doubtfire" about a divorced man dressing as a nanny to spend time with his children at his former wife's new home.

One of the most compassionate and quietly strong roles he ever played was the rescuer and mentor of a gifted by abused boy in "Good Will Hunting".

The list goes on and on and on since his graduation from Julliard.

Williams was married three times most recently in 2011.

Comedians and Depression

Another celebrity comedian of the Bay Area has been quite open about his own battle with life-threatening depression. That's San Leandro's Brian Copeland tries to shed light on the subject via his Facebook page and his one man autobiographical performances often at The Marsh theater in the Mission district of San Francisco. His most recent work is non-autobiographical about a cold blooded triple murder in San Leandro a few years ago, "Scion". He talks about his own struggles with depression in "The Waiting Room".

Depression, like that suffered by comedian David Letterman, is life threatening and not something that can be shaken off. It's signs are withdrawal, a bottomless sense of hopelessness. Anxiety, panic attacks. An inability to find happiness in anyone or anything. Medication does help along with professional intervention.

Medications such as Zoloft and Effexor can be a little miracle. This class of drugs help counter the changes in blood chemistry caused by prolonged stress.