Actress Anne Heche has died after sustaining injuries in a car crash in Los Angeles on Friday, August 5. She was 53 years old.
“Today we lost a bright light, a kind and most joyful soul, a loving mother, and a loyal friend. Anne will be deeply missed but she lives on through her beautiful sons, her iconic body of work, and her passionate advocacy. Her bravery for always standing in her truth, spreading her message of love and acceptance, will continue to have a lasting impact,” a representative for Heche told People in a statement on behalf of her family and friends. She remains on life support so OneLegacy Foundation can find recipients, as the actress wanted to donate her organs.
“Unfortunately, due to her accident, Anne Heche suffered a severe anoxic brain injury and remains in a coma, in critical condition. She is not expected to survive,” a representative for her family and friends said in a statement on August 11. “It has long been her choice to donate her organs and she is being kept on life support to determine if any are viable.
“Anne had a huge heart and touched everyone she met with her generous spirit,” the rep continued. “More than her extraordinary talent, she saw spreading kindness and joy as her life’s work — especially moving the needle for acceptance of who you are. She will be remembered for her courageous honesty and dearly missed for her light.”
On August 5, Heche’s car crashed into the garage of an L.A. apartment complex, then again into a house, and the actress was burned in the ensuing fire. Though she was initially reported to be in stable condition, just two days later her representative said she was “in extreme critical condition,” with “a significant pulmonary injury requiring mechanical ventilation and burns that require surgical intervention.”
Heche was best known for her film roles in Six Days Seven Nights, Donnie Brasco, Wag the Dog, and Volcano. Her TV credits include All Rise, Chicago P.D., Quantico, Men in Trees, The Brave, and Another World. She also competed in Season 29 of Dancing With the Stars. She will appear in The Weeknd’s upcoming HBO series, The Idol, and her Lifetime film Girl in Room 13 will premiere in September.
Heche was nominated for an Emmy in 2004 for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie for Gracie’s Choice. She won a Daytime Emmy in 1991 for Outstanding Younger Actress in a Drama Series for portraying twins Vicky Hudson and Marley Love in Another World. She was nominated for another in 1989 for Outstanding Juvenile Female in a Drama Series.
Heche is survived by her sons Atlas, 13, whom she shares with ex and former Men in Trees costar James Tupper, and Homer, 20, from her marriage to Coley Laffoon.