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Tim Ryerson's Blog

About Tim Ryerson
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Bloggers PhotoRetired from the printing business in 2011...now happily living in Ponchatoula, LA close to my wonderful (and enormous) family. I have three beautiful daughters, seven grandchildren and six great-grandchildren, who I spoil rotten because that's my job. The bio picture is me with my oldest grandaughter, Dixie.
My goal is to write a halfway decent poem sometime...My favorite poets are Robert Frost, Edward Arlington Robinson and Wallace Stevens...I have read everything John Steinbeck ever wrote at least three times

DEATH OF A COMIC GENIUS


Blog Posted:8/11/2014 7:50:00 PM

I’m sure many of you have heard of this by now but nonetheless, here is some sad news. Robin was influenced by the late, great and hilarious Jonathan Winters who had a role in Robin’s series Mork and Mindy...Thanks for reading - Tim

Robin Williams, the manic comic who morphed from TV's Mork from Ork to Oscar-winning glory, is dead of an apparent suicide. He was 63.
Emergency personnel were called to Williams's home in Tiburon, California, at 11:55 a.m. local time, per the Marin County Sheriff's Office.
Williams was found unconscious and pronounced dead at the scene. Authorities are investigating the death, and an autopsy is forthcoming, but initial evidence points to "a suicide due to asphyxia," according to Marin Sheriff's Lt. Keith Boyd.
In a brief statement, publicist Mara Buxbaum said Williams had been "battling severe depression of late. This is a tragic and sudden loss. The family respectfully asks for their privacy as they grieve during this very difficult time."
"This morning, I lost my husband and my best friend," said Williams's wife, Susan Schneider.
"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."
In July, Williams entered rehab for the second time, but not because of a relapse.
"After working back-to-back projects, Robin is simply taking the opportunity to fine-tune and focus on his continued commitment, of which he remains extremely proud," the actor's publicist said at the time.
Williams reportedly spent a few weeks at Hazelden Addiction Treatment Center in Minnesota.
The actor spoke publicly about his battle with substance abuse. In 2006, he sought treatment for alcoholism after 20 years of sobriety. A rep for the actor said in a statement that Robin "found himself drinking again and has decided to take proactive measures to deal with this for his own well-being and the well-being of his family."
During an interview with Good Morning America months later, Williams explained that falling back into alcohol abuse was "very gradual."
"It's the same voice thought that… you're standing at a precipice and you look down, there's a voice and it's a little quiet voice that goes, 'Jump,'" Williams told Diane Sawyer. "The same voice that goes, 'Just one.' … And the idea of just one for someone who has no tolerance for it, that's not the possibility."
When asked why he relapsed, Robin answered: "It's [addiction] — not caused by anything, it's just there… It waits. It lays in wait for the time when you think, 'It's fine now, I'm OK.' Then, the next thing you know, it's not OK. Then you realize, 'Where am I? I didn't realize I was in Cleveland.'"
The actor admitted he also struggled with cocaine abuse in the early 1980s while starring in the sitcom Mork and Mindy, but quit cold turkey after his friend John Belushi's fatal overdose in 1982.
"Cocaine for me was a place to hide," Williams told People in 1988. "Most people get hyper on coke. It slowed me down. Sometimes it made me paranoid and impotent, but mostly it just made me withdrawn. And I was so crazy back then — working all day, partying most of the night — I needed an excuse not to talk. I needed quiet times and I used coke to get them."
A Chicago native, Williams spent time at Juilliard, where he was briefly classmates with Christopher Reeve.
After an appearance on NBC's Richard Pryor Show, he got his big break, playing the wacky alien Mork in what was supposed to be a one-off guest role on ABC's Happy Days. The character proved so popular that he commanded his own spinoff. Mork & Mindy, costarring Pam Dawber and Jonathan Winters, became a phenomenon, spiking sales of rainbow-colored suspenders and adding "nanu-nanu" and "shazbot" to the lexicon. The sitcom ran from 1978 to 1982.
Williams made the leap to film, with a string of wildly successful movies, showing a range beyond the motor-mouthed improvisation he built his standup career on: The World According to Garp, Moscow on the Hudson, Awakenings, The Birdcage, Mrs. Doubtfire, Patch Adams, and Insomnia. He carved out a rich career as a voice-over actor in such animated features as Aladdin, Happy Feet,Robots and FernGully.
He earned Oscar nods for Dead Poets Society,The Fisher King and Good Morning, Vietnam, before finally capturing the elusive statuette by upstaging Matt Damon and Ben Affleck with a touching supporting role in Good Will Hunting.
Among the films he completed before his death were May's The Angriest Man in Brooklyn, with Peter Dinklage and Mila Kunis, and the upcoming Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb, where he reprised his role of Teddy Roosevelt in the Ben Stiller-led franchise. The latter is slated to open in December.
Despite being one of Hollywood's most bankable movie stars, Williams never forgot his TV roots. Through the years he fronted several standup concerts and joined with Whoopi Goldberg and Billy Crystal to launch the Comic Relief television specials. Williams also made memorable appearances on Friends, Homicide: Life on the Street, Law & Order: SVU, andThe Larry Sanders Show.
He returned to television in last season's CBS comedy series The Crazy Ones opposite Sarah Michelle Gellar. The show was canceled in May.
In addition to his Academy Award, Williams won two Emmys, five Grammys, six Golden Globes (including the career-capping Cecil B. DeMille Award). He also won the admiration of generations of top comedic talent.

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  1. Date: 8/14/2014 6:32:00 PM
    Him and Tom Hanks are my top favourite actors along with the fockers guy ,Jim Carey and Adam Sanders. .But He and Hanks were always the top of my top when it cones to male actors ,so you can imagine how this news saddened my heart.I'm sure He is entertaining our angels in heaven.That brings me comfort.

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  1. Date: 8/14/2014 12:11:00 AM
    Loved both his stand up and dramatic films. He was so talented and so kind! What a wonderful, rare thing in a human, true kindness. What a terrible loss for his loved ones. I hope he has found peace. P.S. Broadway dimmed their lights tonight in honor of Robin.

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  1. Date: 8/13/2014 10:29:00 PM
    It's a hard world to get through un medicated [sigh]

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  1. Date: 8/13/2014 3:22:00 PM
    God Speed, Oh Captain, my Captain!

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    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/13/2014 7:10:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Thank you for your thoughts Chris...
  1. Date: 8/13/2014 10:46:00 AM
    he will be sorely missed, tim... I kinda grew up with robin Williams and he made me see the happy and deep side of life ...one of his best is dead poet's society...a sad time for many of us... godspeed, robin!

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    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/13/2014 2:25:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    I'm sorry to say that is one of the few movies of his I have missed but not for long...Amazon.com and me will be doing some business very soon
  1. Date: 8/12/2014 11:39:00 PM
    Thank you TIM, for posting this.. A fine tribute, and man... NA-NO NA-NO -----------PD

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    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/13/2014 5:29:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    And thank YOU Linda
  1. Date: 8/12/2014 12:36:00 PM
    He was on my very small list of "THE BEST"!

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    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/13/2014 6:37:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Ditto Craig...
  1. Date: 8/12/2014 8:47:00 AM
    (tried to post last night, but Soup went out on me and I saved my comment in Word!!)Here is what I tried to say, Tim: It looks like you beat me to the punch. Our minds think alike. I was wanting to blog about his amazing man but I did not know all these details, so I am glad to see you did it instead. I think I saw all the movies he played in. Hard to believe the sadness that was behind that brilliant mind, when he had so much to live for. I wonder if he was bi polar because he was so manic in his comedy!! They get severely depressed. well, it is really sad. A great man died tonight (Last night).

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    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/13/2014 3:11:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    The fact that cocaine 'slowed him down' seems to verify this but I'm no doctor. A guy that once worked for me was hyper-active as a child and they gave him amphetamines to calm him down!! Of course, it stunted his growth...
    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/13/2014 3:05:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    I never thought that he might be bi-polar Andrea! I'm sure we'll find out soon...The mother of one of my childhood friends had that disease (Back then they called it manic-depressive) I once saw her walking downtown MILES away from home and she didn't get diagnosed until many years later...
  1. Date: 8/12/2014 7:50:00 AM
    Money and fame can not compensate for damage to the inner spirit. They may cover for a while but eventually one has to face "inner demons" alone. Unless one calls upon our Savior to intercede. I loved the man , the actor for his wit and character but ultimately we all will have to face our ends. Very sad that he did so in such a way!!

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    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/13/2014 7:06:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    I remember seeing on TV or reading it somewhere the advice that if you are about to commit suicide, PUT IT OFF, if only for a few minutes which allows one to reconsider...
  1. Date: 8/12/2014 5:06:00 AM
    None of us know the demons that are hidden in a person's life and addiction of any sort can have terrible implications not only to the user but to the family too. - he was obviously trying to deal with his but something made him snap and take his own life.My thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends - he is a peace - they are left shattered and to try and pick up the pieces - such a tragic tragic loss of an amazing talent :-(

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    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/13/2014 7:00:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    So true Jan - It is not the person who dies who suffers but the ones who are left behind to deal with the loss...Believe me, I know this to be true from my own personal experiences
  1. Date: 8/12/2014 3:37:00 AM
    Many cried upon hearing the news. Kept thinking about his many wonderful characters in movies. Mrs. Doubtfire was hilarious, but there was something very special about "Dead Poets' Society." If you recall, one of the young men at the school was depressed that his parents didn't want him to pursue a career in acting. The boy committed suicide after his father humiliated him when he gave a performance in "Midsummer Night's Dream" at a nearby school. I keep thinking that Robin understood this boy's torment more than any one since depression seemed to be linked to his alleged suicide. Saying farewell to someone who gave us so much laughter is very difficult.

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    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/13/2014 6:51:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    'Dead Poets' is one of the very few movies of his I have not seen....I plan to order it ASAP! I think the saying 'laugh to keep from crying' applies to most, if not all comedians...Thank you for your insightful thoughts my friend
  1. Date: 8/12/2014 3:00:00 AM
    I'm gutted, Tim. So is my daughter. We loved that guy!!! :( Just...knowing that he took his own life makes it so much harder to deal with. I'm sick of death...I hear about it EVERYDAY in these parts of the world...All the time...It's everywhere...Now, it took someone I think is so amazing! :( Those who laugh the hardest sometimes hide the most pain. I know...Media vita in morte sumus – in the midst of life we are in death (Wolfgang Grassl). Oh, Robin....it's always the beautiful ones that go....Depression...takes them one and all.

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    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/13/2014 2:23:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    I have to find Mr. Grassi's writings Eileen...That is one of the most wise and insightful quotes I have ever seen...
  1. Date: 8/11/2014 9:21:00 PM
    I was shock and saddened to hear this funny man is gone.. How he left us is sadder still. You never know who may be hurting and how one kind word or act can heal. I pray for his family and hope in these times we learn something about our humanity.. We truly need one another, no matter how much wealth or fame you achieve you are still a needy human. Wealth is peace!

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    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/11/2014 9:49:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Yessir, you have summed this tragedy up very well...I had a close friend in the early 70's who was constantly laughing, cutting up and joking. I can't remember ever seeing him down or depressed and guess what? Yep...
  1. Date: 8/11/2014 8:41:00 PM
    ... and my favourite is Good Will Hunting, this tragedy seems to have ended my writers block. R.I.P. Robin and thank you

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    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/11/2014 8:49:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Yes indeed Francine...I remember that performance well. I find it AMAZING that a comic genius like him could cross over to acting in 'serious' roles...
  1. Date: 8/11/2014 8:35:00 PM
    His genius wit can only be compared to the legendary Jonathon Winters....each one so quick on their feet with improve comedy.....no others could match... It is so terribly sad to lose the caliber of talent, someone who could make us cry with laughter,,, or cry with his amazing dramatic roles..... too hard to let go of someone that brought such pleasure to his audience. Rest in Peace dear Robin Williams........and thank you for the laughter

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    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/11/2014 8:44:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Thanks Carrie - Jonathan Winters is my all-time favorite comic. Remember his TV show? At the end he had someone hand him an object and he did an inprov on it...He never failed to do something hilarious. He did something on Johnny Carson that literally made me roll on the floor...
  1. Date: 8/11/2014 8:12:00 PM
    My favorite movie role of his was in 'Awakenings' based on a true story... Co-starring Robert De Niro and Julie Kavner who played Valerie Harper's sister in the TV series 'Rhoda' and does the voice of Marge on 'The Simpsons'...De Niro's acting was unbelievable...He was nominated for an Oscar for his stunning performance...Anyone who has not seen this movie should DEFINITELY do so...The ending is absolutely heartbreaking

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    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/11/2014 9:57:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    You hit the mark Carrie...The majority of comedians are troubled and sad people who use comedy to compensate...
    Richards Avatar Carrie Richards Date: 8/11/2014 9:08:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Another favorite "Dead Poet's Society"..., so many lessons to be learned in that movie, about acceptance, and honor. I'm so sad to know how often we will find, that with genius, there is too often a price. And often behind the greatest laughs of all times, are some of the saddest stories unknown. It is heartbreaking to know there was such despair in that smiling face.
    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/11/2014 8:53:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Not surprised that you saw that movie Carrie, seeing as how you are a music/movie buff like me...
    Richards Avatar Carrie Richards Date: 8/11/2014 8:38:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    This is one of my favorites too....wonderful film it is!
  1. Date: 8/11/2014 8:00:00 PM
    Oh Tim, I had no idea until I read your blog. This is so sad. He was talented and so funny. Oh my.. I'm shocked. Thanks for letting us know love. oxox Gail

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    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 8/11/2014 8:24:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Thanks Gail - I was shocked and sad too...

My Past Blog Posts

 
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