Margot Kidder’s death has been ruled a suicide, the Park County coroner’s office in Montana confirms to Us Weekly.
The office’s deputy coroner, Richard Wood, tells Us that the Superman star died “as a result of a self-inflicted drug and alcohol overdose” and that no further details will be released.
“Ms. Kidder’s family urges those suffering from mental illnesses, addiction and/or suicidal thoughts to seek appropriate counseling and treatment,” Wood says. “The public is encouraged to allow the family to grieve privately and to have this matter closed.”
Kidder was found dead at the age of 69 at her home in Livingston, Montana, on May 13.
The actress’ only child, Maggie McGuane, whom she shared with ex-husband Thomas McGuane, told the Associated Press on Wednesday, August 8, that she knew her mother died by suicide the moment authorities took her to Kidder’s home.
“It’s a big relief that the truth is out there,” she told the news agency. “It’s important to be open and honest so there’s not a cloud of shame in dealing with this.”
Maggie urged others dealing with mental illnesses to seek help. “It’s a very unique sort of grief and pain,” she said. “Knowing how many families in this state go through this, I wish that I could reach out to each one of them.”
Kidder, who was best known for her role as Lois Lane opposite Christopher Reeve’s Superman in 1978, battled bipolar disorder for decades. Her diagnosis was made public in 1996 when she suffered a much-publicized manic episode that left her homeless for a brief period of time. She continued to advocate for mental health awareness in the years that followed.
In addition to Superman, the movie star was best known for her roles in Black Christmas (1974), The Great Waldo Pepper (1975) and The Amityville Horror (1979).
If you or someone you know is in emotional distress or considering suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
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