Nelsan Ellis, who played fan-favorite Lafayette Reynolds on HBO's True Blood, passed away Saturday at the age of 39. As his Hollywood friends and fans mourn his passing, his family has released more details surrounding his death, which was due to heart failure related to alcohol withdrawal complications.
"After many stints in rehab, Nelsan attempted to withdraw from alcohol on his own,” the statement reads. "According to his father, during his withdrawal from alcohol he had a blood infection, his kidneys shut down, his liver was swollen, his blood pressure plummeted, and his dear sweet heart raced out of control."
According to the statement, his family decided to share the circumstances surrounding his death in an effort to help those who may be struggling with similar addictions.
You can read the full statement below:
Shortly after news of Ellis' death broke, HBO issued a heartfelt statement about the beloved actor.
"We were extremely saddened to hear of the passing of Nelsan Ellis. Nelsan was a long-time member of the HBO family whose groundbreaking portrayal of Lafayette will be remembered fondly within the overall legacy of True Blood. Nelsan will be dearly missed by his fans and all of us at HBO."
RIP Nelsan Ellis.