LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — He inspired countless comedians from the stage of Hollywood’s Laugh Factory.
And it was there that Robin Williams was remembered by the fans he made laugh for decades, and by his colleagues, after his unexpected death Monday at 63.
ROBIN WILLIAMS, 1951-2014
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“Robin Williams Rest In Peace Make God Laugh,” read the marquee above the famed venue on Hollywood’s Sunset Boulevard Monday night.
CBS2’s Brittney Hopper spoke to the owner of the comedy club, who said it was indeed a “very sad day.”
Fans were meanwhile seen gathering outside to take pictures of the marquee and the storied comedy club where Williams delivered his material.
Williams was pronounced dead at his home in Tiburon, Calif., after emergency responders were called to the scene of a report of a male adult who had been located unconscious and not breathing just before noon Monday, according to the Marin County Sheriff’s Department.
Officials said that they suspect the death to be suicide due to asphyxia, although an investigation into the cause, manner and circumstances of his death is underway.
Statements have since flooded in from his former colleagues, including Williams’ Mork & Mindy co-star, Pam Dawber, who said she was “completely and totally devastated” by the news.
Comedian Paul Rodriguez, who credited Williams with giving him his big break, said he felt as though “somebody punched me in the stomach” upon learning the news.
“I think everybody in America tonight is going to experience crying for someone you never met. But you felt you knew him,” he told Hopper. “This is a devastating loss for the comedy community, for show business in general and for America.”
Several comedians were among the thousands expressing their grief on social media.
“Robin Williams made the world a little bit better. RIP,” Steve Carell tweeted.
“I can’t believe the news about Robin Williams. He gave so much to so many people. I’m heartbroken,” Ellen DeGeneres added.
Williams is survived by his wife, Susan Schneider, and three children.
Schneider released the following statement: “This morning, I lost my husband and my best friend, while the world lost one of its most beloved artists and beautiful human beings.
“I am utterly heartbroken. On behalf of Robin’s family, we are asking for privacy during our time of profound grief. As he is remembered, it is our hope the focus will not be on Robin’s death, but on the countless moments of joy and laughter he gave to millions.”
Williams last tweeted two weeks ago, sharing a link to an Instagram photo of himself with his daughter.
“#tbt and Happy Birthday to Ms. Zelda Rae Williams! Quarter of a century old today but always my baby girl. Happy Birthday @zeldawilliams Love you!” he wrote.
To access a list of suicide hotlines in Los Angeles County, visit the county’s Public Health website.