Anne Heche declared brain-dead, but still on life support after Mar Vista car crash, rep says

In the latest update on Anne Heche's condition, a representative said she is still on life support for possible organ donation.

ByRob Hayes and ABC7.com staff via KABC logo
Saturday, August 13, 2022
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Anne Heche has been declared brain-dead one week after she crashed her car into a home in the Mar Vista neighborhood of Los Angeles, a representative confirmed on Friday.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Anne Heche has been declared brain-dead after she suffered a severe brain injury during a car crash in the Mar Vista neighborhood of Los Angeles, a representative for the actress's family confirmed on Friday.

While she is legally dead according to California law, her heart is still beating, the representative said. Heche has not been taken off life support as medical experts try to determine if she is a match for organ donation.

A statement issued on behalf of Heche's family and friends reads:

"We have lost a bright light, a kind and most joyful soul, a loving mother, and a loyal friend. Anne will be deeply missed but she lives on through her beautiful sons, her iconic body of work, and her passionate advocacy. Her bravery for always standing in her truth, spreading her message of love and acceptance, will continue to have a lasting impact."

Heche's first child, son Homer Laffoon, also issued a statement, calling the days since the crash as being filled with "unbelievable emotional swings."

"My brother Atlas and I lost our Mom. After six days of almost unbelievable emotional swings, I am left with a deep, wordless sadness. Hopefully my mom is free from pain and beginning to explore what I like to imagine as her eternal freedom. Over those six days, thousands of friends, family, and fans made their hearts known to me. I am grateful for their love, as I am for the support of my Dad, Coley, and my stepmom Alexi who continue to be my rock during this time. Rest In Peace Mom, I love you, Homer."

Heche crashed her car last week, apparently driving at high speed before losing control and smashing through the walls of a home in Mar Vista, setting the car and home on fire. A woman inside the home and her pets escaped serious injury but her house was severely damaged.

Shortly after the crash, Heche slipped into a coma and was listed in critical condition.

Police later tested her blood and determined she was likely under the influence of a controlled substance while she was behind the wheel.

Investigators with the Los Angeles Police Department told ABC News there will be no further investigative efforts made in the case, given Friday's developments.

Heche first rose to prominence on the soap opera "Another World," from 1987 to 1991 winning a Daytime Emmy for her role. In the 1990s she became a popular choice for Hollywood, co-starring in films such as "Donnie Brasco," "Volcano" and "Return to Paradise."

Her relationship with Ellen DeGeneres during the late 1990s heightened her fame, though she lamented that the publicity seemed to harm her career.

In the fall of 2000 soon after the two broke up, Heche was hospitalized after knocking on the door of a stranger near Fresno. Authorities said she had appeared shaken and disoriented, and spoke incoherently to the residents.

In a memoir released the following year, "Call Me Crazy," Heche talked about her lifelong struggles with mental health and a childhood of abuse.

She was married to camera operator Coleman Laffoon from 2001 to 2009. The two had a son together. She had another son during a relationship with actor James Tupper, her co-star on the TV series "Men In Trees."

DEVELOPING: We will add more details to this report as they become available.