Actress Anne Heche has Died at Age 53

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After a tragic car crash last week on Thursday, actress Anne Heche has died. The exact cause of her death is not yet disclosed, but the LAPD was planning to administer a second blood test in order to rule out the possibility that she was taking narcotics. She suffered from severe anoxic brain injury and was put on life support, but has since been pronounced dead. She was remembered for her activism for mental health awareness and her commitment to her family.

Anne Heche’s lifelong struggles with mental health

While she may not be able to discuss her personal life with Ellen DeGeneres, the actress has opened up about her lifelong struggles with mental health. In her 2001 memoir, ‘Call Me Crazy,’ Anne Heche opened up about losing her brother Nathan and sister Susan to suicide. In her memoir, Anne also described her tumultuous relationship with her father. She claims that her father sexually abused her and she contracted genital herpes from him. She claims her father and remaining sister Abigail denied her accusations.

His father, Donald, led a bizarre and duplicitous lifestyle. Although a “God-fearing Baptist,” he was an AIDS sufferer as a result of his sexual activity and often left the family in dire straits. When Heche was only thirteen, he took his family to Aurora,, Ohio, where he smoked and frequented gay clubs. Heche’s father died of AIDS, leaving his family destitute. Until the day he died, he claimed to be in the oil and gas business, and Heche and her siblings depended on strangers for survival, according to the actress.

She was an advocate for gay marriage

The actress was also a vocal proponent of gay marriage. She dated and starred with Ellen DeGeneres, the host of the talk show Ellen, and they dated during the 1990s. They broke up in the year 2000. Anne Heche was an advocate of gay marriage and openly discussed her own struggles with mental health and abuse.

In 1997, a Gallup poll found that 27% of American adults supported same-sex marriage. President Bill Clinton’s Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) defined marriage as a union between one man and one woman.

She struggled with substance abuse

As the former star of Another World, Anne Heche has been open about her struggles with substance abuse. While her relationship with Ellen DeGeneres was in the media, she was still dealing with substance abuse issues. She had been in a relationship with Ellen DeGeneres, when she went on a bender in 2000, abandoning her SUV in the desert near Fresno. In a subsequent interview with Larry King of CNN, she revealed that she took Ecstasy before getting into the car.

Although many Hollywood stars have struggled with substance abuse and mental illness, few have come out publicly about their problems. Her struggles with substance abuse are likely related to unresolved issues. Her family of origin had a tragic history  and she lost three siblings while growing up. Her mother was a fundamentalist Methodist and her elder sister, Cynthia Awar, died of a heart defect at a young age (before the actress was born).

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