Heath Ledger's family pays tribute

January 25, 2008 7:48:59 AM PST
Heath Ledger's family remembered the actor as "the most amazing 'old soul' in a young man's body." In a separate tribute, his sister said she could "hardly breathe" as she tried to write about "my little brother."

"As a close knit and very private family we have observed you so determined yet quietly travelling in your self-styled path in life, nothing would get in your way ... no mountain too tall, no river too wide," the family said in a death notice published Friday in The West Australian.

"You dreamed your dreams and lived them with passion and intelligent commitment. We have been privileged to accompany you on a ride through life that has simply been amazing and through it all we have loved each other beyond imagination," the notice added. "Our hearts are broken."

In a separate notice, Ledger's father Kim wrote: "Heatho, Beef ... my beautiful boy, so loving, so talented, so independent ... so no more chess games mate ... this is it, couldn't beat you anyway.

"We were one, in soul and commitment, just ... father and son."

The actor's sister, Kate, said she could "hardly breathe" as she tried to write her tribute.

"We were the ultimate soul mates," she said.

"You were so many things to so many people, but to me you were just my little brother. You will never leave my thoughts, 'Roast', ever."

Ledger's mother, Sally Ledger-Bell, said the family would always be there for his 2-year-old daughter, Matilda, whose mother, actress Michelle Williams, was separated from the actor.

The newspaper said the notice had been posted by Ledger's family, who were flying to the U.S. from Australia and could not be reached for comment.

The 28-year-old actor was found dead in his New York apartment Tuesday, where police also found several bottles of prescription drugs. Authorities suspect a possible overdose, but toxicology tests have not yet determined the exact cause of death.

The actor's body was taken to the Frank E. Campbell funeral home in New York for a private viewing. Neither Ledger's family nor his U.S.-based publicist, Mara Buxbaum, have confirmed any details about the funeral or burial arrangements.