James Gandolfini's body will be flown back to New York City and will arrive Monday night, family spokesman, Michael Kobold, confirmed to Us Weekly on Sunday, June 23. Kobold spoke to the press at the Boscolo Exedra Hotel, where Gandolfini and his family were staying at the time of his death.'
The Emmy winning Sopranos star, 51, died of a heart attack on Wednesday, June 19 while vacationing in Rome with his family. In a statement read by Kobold on Sunday, he thanked the Italian authorities for their help in wake of the tragedy.
"On behalf of the Gandolfini family, I would like to thank the Italian authorities for all the assistance they have rendered in expediting the formalities necessary to repatriate James Gandolfini’s remains to the United States," he said. "We are fully aware that this process usually takes seven days and we are extremely grateful for their efficiency in dealing with this matter."
He added, "It has been our privilege to be guests in your beautiful country, despite the difficult circumstances. We sincerely thank you."
Kobold also went on to thank the United States government for their assistance and "kind support." He noted that the family wanted to thank United Airlines "for moving mountains to help us" and HBO, the cable network behind The Sopranos, "for their support at this difficult time."
While the spokesman said further announcements will be made in regard to funeral plans, a source tells Us that the funeral service will be at 10am on Thursday, June 27, at Cathedral of St. John the Divine in upper Manhattan.
After Gandolfini's 13-year-old son, Michael, found him collapsed in the hotel room on Wednesday, the actor was transported to the Policlinico Umberto I hospital; paramedics attempted in vain to revive him en route.
"The resuscitation maneuvers, including heart massage, continued for 40 minutes and then, seeing no electric activity from the heart, this was interrupted and we declared James dead," Dr. Claudio Modini told reporters on Friday, June 21.
An autopsy confirmed that the three-time Emmy winner had "nothing else" in his system at the time of his death.
Gandolfini is also survived by his wife, Deborah Lin, and their 9-month-old daughter, Liliana, plus two sisters, Leta and Johanna Antonacci.
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