Back in December, the world suffered a tragic loss when the great Carrie Fisher passed away unexpectedly. At the time, we’d heard that the actress had been having health problems and had been rushed off a plane after collapsing just days earlier. That’s all we really knew, however, and it’s only this weekend that the results from the autopsy report have been revealed, finally telling us what caused Fisher’s death.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the actress died from “sleep apnea and a combination of other factors.” What those “other factors” are is currently unknown, as “investigators were not able to pinpoint an exact cause.” They did note though that there was a “buildup of fatty tissue in the walls of her arteries,” which no doubt contributed to her death. There were also signs of Fisher having taken “multiple drugs,” though it’s unknown whether or not that had anything to do with why she died.
Today, the actress’ daughter, Billie Lourd, issued a statement about the findings from the autopsy, noting that her mother battled mental illness her entire life and ultimately, that’s what she died from.
“My mom battled drug addiction and mental illness her entire life. She ultimately died from it. She was purposefully open in all of her work about the social stigmas surrounding these diseases.”
Lourd then continued on, talking about how Carrie encouraged people to be open about their illness:
“She talked about the shame that torments people and their families confronted by these diseases. I know my Mom, she’d want her death to encourage people to be open about their struggles. Seek help, fight for government funding for mental health programs. Shame and those social stigmas are the enemies of progress to solutions and ultimately a cure. Love you Momby.”
As fans will know, Fisher served as an inspiration to many thanks to her openness and transparency about her struggles, always using her mental illness as a way to encourage more discussion and awareness on the topic, rather than let it hold her back – something that she’ll always be remembered and praised for.
While our hearts are still broken over the actress’ untimely death, we’ll thankfully get to see Carrie Fisher on the big screen one last time when she reprises her role as Leia Organa in Rian Johnson’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which flies into theatres this December.