Priyanka Chopra and Ellen DeGeneres lead tributes after death of Anne Heche

The mother-of-two suffered extensive brain injuries in a car crash in Los Angeles last week

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Tributes continue to pour in for Anne Heche, after the actress was declared legally dead in Los Angeles on Friday.

Heche, 53, suffered extensive brain injuries after a car accident in Los Angeles last week, which left her in a coma. She was taken to hospital on August 5 after the collision left her vehicle "engulfed in flames". She was driving her blue Mini Cooper when she veered off the road and struck a two-storey home.

Priyanka Chopra, who worked with Heche on the television series Quantico, called her “a lovely person and an incredible actress”.

“My heart goes out to Anne Heche’s children, family, friends, and everyone who grieves,” Chopra posted on Instagram. “It was an honour to have known you and worked by your side. You will always have a special place in my heart.”

Priyanka Chopra paid tribute to Anne Heche on Instagram. Photo: Priyanka Chopra / Instagram

Ellen DeGeneres tweeted her condolences, sending her love to Heche’s children, family and friends. “This is a sad day,” she wrote.

According to the Los Angeles Fire Department, 59 firefighters took more than an hour to remove Heche from the wreckage and extinguish the flames.

The occupant of the home Heche crashed into escaped without injury — investigations are ongoing if she under the influence of drugs after reports Heche suffered a minor car crash on the same day.

"Today we lost a bright light, a kind and most joyful soul, a loving mother, and a loyal friend,” Heche's family said on Friday.

“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 son, Homer Laffoon, also released a statement of his own, saying: “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.”

Heche rose to fame after starring in soap opera Another World, for which she won a Daytime Emmy Award in 1991. She is also known for her performance in Donnie Brasco, starring Johnny Depp, I Know What You Did Last Summer, Six Days, Seven Nights and Return to Paradise.

Heche’s ex-husband and Men In Trees co-star James Tupper posted a picture of Heche on Instagram, with the simple caption: “Love you forever.”

Fellow actress Rosanna Arquette posted a similarly stark message on Twitter: “Rest in peace now Anne.”

Actor Levi Meaden, who acted alongside Heche in the 2016 TV series Aftermath, called her “an icon” and recalled her vulnerability and “ferocious courage”.

“Lord knows she had her struggles in life, but it led her to carry herself the way she did, led her to be the woman I met … She gave me so much advice … I’m heartbroken and I know many, may other people are as well.”

Actor Isiah Whitlock Jr also posted a tribute on Twitter, writing: "RIP Anne Heche. My heart breaks. One of the kindest and most talented actors I’ve ever worked with. God bless you. You will be greatly missed.”

Updated: August 13, 2022, 7:44 AM
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