It has been nearly 6 years since we tragically lost the amazing Robin Williams. It's been hard for those who grew up watching him, but even harder for his family, who are the ones keeping his spirit alive.
His son Zak knows what it's like to struggle with mental health, and has set up the most amazing tribute to his late father.
Keep scrolling for the full story...
On August 11th, 2014, the world suffered a tragic loss.
via: Getty ImagesActor and comedian, Robin Williams, took his own life at the age of sixty-three.
Robin Williams was a household name...
via: Getty ImagesThe actor, who was best known for his starring roles in movies such as Mrs. Doubtfire and Good Will Hunting, always held his signature comedic act and he was well-known and well-loved for his lovable and funny nature.
But he faced many personal challenges during his life...He developed an alcohol and drug problem while working on the 1978 sitcom, Mork and Mindy.
Robin was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease shortly before his death...As well as suffering from Lewy Body Dementia, a type of brain disease that affected his thinking, memory and movement control.
It’s the second-most common type of progressive dementia after Alzheimer’s disease.
via: TwitterAnd it is believed that the actor struggled greatly with coming to terms with his diagnosis.
He struggled with addiction for more than 2 decades...
via: Getty ImagesAnd he married actress, Valerie Velardi, until their divorce in 1988.
Robin went on to re-marry...
via: Getty ImagesMarsha Garces was Robin's son's nanny, and it was rumored that she had an affair with the actor while he was still married. But after he divorced, they were to eventually marry and have 2 children together - Zelda and Cody.
Robin would yet again be divorced in 2010...
via: Getty ImagesBut he always remained close with his children, especially Zelda.
Zelda has gone on to be a success...
via: Getty ImagesShe is now thirty-years-old and she works as an actress, following in the footsteps of her late father.
She regularly talks about her dad...And it's clear that the pain of losing him is still very much there.
Zelda's brother, Cody, got married earlier this year...
via: TwitterThe date was on the 21st of July, which would have been Robin's sixty-eighth birthday.
It was a touching tribute to their late father...
via: Getty Images"The 21st of July has meant many things to me over the years... it was the day my Dad was born, and the last day I got to see him. That last one had begun to usurp the joy of the first two in recent years... that is, until 2 days ago when it became something new. On the 21st of July, 2019, it became the day I officially gained a new sister!" Zelda wrote in an emotional post on Instagram.
Since Robin's death, Zak has been very open about his mourning process.
via: Twitter"I miss him all the time."
As much as the world has missed Robin Williams, the pain of his family is inconceivable.
via: GettySpeaking to People shortly after Robin’s death, Zak said, “Often I see something or if I’m watching a film, I think, ‘Oh, man, he would have appreciated this’ or ‘He would have gotten a laugh out of this.'"
Zak has sworn to keep the spirit of his father alive.
via: GettyThe thirty-seven-year-old has opened up about his new involvement with Inseparable, a mental health organization aiming to make sure all Americans are granted access to mental health care amid this pandemic.
Zak, who is the eldest, said he and his siblings are planning to honor their dad next month on Father's Day."Time flies," Zak said. "I talked to my siblings to share stories and thoughts and photos that we like and appreciate."
Currently, they're all social distancing in their respective homes."It will be nice to be able to speak with my brother and sister around remembering dad. It's certainly an opportunity to be introspective as we'll be together, apart."
They plan on meeting up soon."The key thing for us during this upcoming Father's Day is just to take some quiet time to reflect as a family around all the things that we're grateful for around him and who he was," Zak said.
In his own way, Zak has already found a way to reflect on his father's life and legacy.
Today, I am proud to stand beside so many others as we launch @IAmInseparable - a new #mentalhealth advocacy organi… https://t.co/6I7ESC1U3H— Ben Miller (@Ben Miller)1589889763.0
It's something his dad would be proud of...
I joined the @IAmInseparable advisory board because I believe we need pragmatic mental health policy that unlocks c… https://t.co/bHff9kFmBU— Zak Williams (@Zak Williams)1589900040.0
People need that kind of support right now.
Thank you, @zakwilliams for sharing your powerful story and being a part of the @IAmInseparable team! https://t.co/vEuU0B0o9D— Bill Smith (@Bill Smith)1590704561.0
Zak has been searching for his own method of finding peace and balance with his mental health.
Zak Williams, a mental health advocate and son of actor Robin Williams discusses his work with Bring Change to Mind… https://t.co/Jd2ryCGGle— IU Bloomington (@IU Bloomington)1582506240.0
He's been detailing the ways he's dealt with his mental health struggles over the years.
Zak Williams sweetly sharing about his experiences with depression and anxiety; Robin Williams son with such courag… https://t.co/IlZFWgqGA3— Judy Kuriansky (@Judy Kuriansky)1569296678.0
His family also helps to keep him grounded, and he's looking forward to spending time with Mickey on Father's Day.
via: Twitter"[Becoming a dad] completely changes [you], but [gives you] perspective on what it takes to actually show up for another person," he says. "To be a present and engaged parent requires focus and commitment to time and an effort that ... it's a lot. But the rewards are unlike anything I've experienced before." Keep scrolling for the uncovered deleted scenes from Mrs. Doubtfire that show just how special he really was...