Let’s be realistic. Death tends to exalt people. Casual acquaintances become best friends when they die, and the terrible things said about them in life are often replaced with glowing praise. We have all seen this. Some of this is to be expected.
In the case of Anne Heche, a clearly troubled person, I am embarrassed about putting someone on the pedestal of death when they could have killed any number of completely innocent people.
The DUI criminal investigation into his horrific car accident reportedly found cocaine and fentanyl in his system. There were three separate accidents in the space of 30 minutes, the first two were allegedly hit-and-runs. The third was Heche pulling off the road and plowing his Mini Cooper through the wall of a house in Mar Vista and hurting and almost killing a woman inside. The house and the car caught fire. The house was a total loss.
A few days later, Anne Heche was declared brain dead and the LAPD case was dropped, as is the case with the death of a person under investigation.
News of his death spread quickly and the excitement began. A family representative said in a statement,
“We have lost a shining light, a good and joyful soul, a loving mother and a faithful friend. Anne will be deeply missed, but she lives on through her beautiful sons, her iconic work and her passionate advocacy. Her bravery to always remain faithful to her truth, spreading her message of love and acceptance, will continue to have a lasting impact.”
Most of which I’m sure are true. And many would say that the events she says happened in her life in the 1980s, when she spent her teenage years in Ocean City, New Jersey, were cause enough for pity.
She claimed her father had sexually assaulted her. Then died of AIDS. A few months later, his older brother died in a car accident. Terribly traumatic for sure.
But when does the pity card expire in his life? Heche was 53 years old. She had the time and certainly the means to try to regain control of this trauma with the help of experts and not to make it the problem of others. Instead, she nearly killed an innocent woman minding her own business in her own Los Angeles home and risked the lives of countless others.
Maybe I have my own reasons for being sensitive to what might have been. But I will not join this chorus praising Heche and asking for his holiness.
The views expressed in the above post are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Jeff Deminski only.
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