February 08, 2008 02:35:00 GMT
Heath Ledger died of an accidental "abuse of prescription medications," the New York City medical examiner's office confirmed Wednesday, February 6.
The results of Heath Ledger's toxicology test to find out the cause(s) of his death are in already. Following an inconclusive initial test and a previous delay, it was ruled on Wednesday, February 6 that the Aussie heartthrob died of an accidental "abuse of prescription medications."
A statement issued by the New York Chief Medical Examiner's Office read, "Mr. Heath Ledger died as the result of acute intoxication by the combined effects of oxycodone, hydrocodone, diazepam, temazepam, alprazolam, and doxylamine. We have concluded that the manner of death is accident, resulting from the abuse of prescription medications."
A representative for New York's Drug Enforcement Administration, meanwhile, said that the agency is working to determine how Heath was able to obtain so many prescription drugs. "We are working with the NYPD to identify any illegally prescribed drugs that may have been prescribed to [Ledger]," spokesperson Erin Mulvey said in a statement.
Soon following the release of Heath's toxicology results, the late actor's father Kim Ledger quickly issued drugs warning, telling others about the dangers of mixing prescription drugs.
Spoke out on Heath's official cause of death, Kim issued a statement, saying "We remain humble as parents and a family, among millions of people worldwide who may have suffered the tragic loss of a child. Few can understand the hollow, wrenching and enduring agony parents silently suffer when a child predeceases them. Today's results put an end to speculation, but our son's beautiful spirit and enduring memory will forever remain in our hearts."
"While no medications were taken in excess, we learned today the combination of doctor-prescribed drugs proved lethal for our boy. Heath's accidental death serves as a caution [of] the hidden dangers of combining prescription medication, even at low dosage," so he said further. "Our family enjoyed an extremely happy two-week visit with Heath just prior to the New Year. Those recent precious days will stay with us forever. We as a family feel privileged to have some of his amazing magic moments captured in film. To most of the world, Heath was an actor of immeasurable talent and promise. To those who knew him personally, Heath was a consummate artist whose passions also included photography, music, chess and directing. We knew Heath as a loving father, as our devoted son, and as a loyal and generous brother and friend."
Kim, moreover, added "We treasure our beautiful granddaughter Matilda (to our dear Michelle) as well as an unbelievably wonderful network of close friends, forever, around the world. Families rarely experience the uplifting, warm and massive outpouring of grief and support as have we, from every corner of the planet. This has deeply and profoundly touched our hearts and lives. We are eternally grateful. At this moment we respectfully request the worldwide media allow us time to grieve privately, without the intrusions associated with press and photography."
Heath was found dead, naked in bed, surrounded by prescription sleeping pills in the bedroom of his Soho apartment around 3:30 P.M. back on January 22 by his housekeeper and a masseuse who had arrived for an appointment with the actor.
While there has yet any official statement from Heath's camp concerning his burial, it is widely believed that he will be buried in a family plot next to two of his grandparents at Perth's Karrakatta Cemetery.