News of Robin Williams's death at age 63 on Monday sparked an outpouring of love and support from grieving fans and friends across social media platforms. And late Monday, the president himself weighed in with kind words for the late Academy Award-winning actor and comedian.
"Robin Williams was an airman, a doctor, a genie, a nanny, a president, a professor, a bangarang Peter Pan, and everything in between," President Obama said in a statement, adding, "But he was one of a kind. He arrived in our lives as an alien – but he ended up touching every element of the human spirit. He made us laugh. He made us cry. He gave his immeasurable talent freely and generously to those who needed it most – from our troops stationed abroad to the marginalized on our own streets. The Obama family offers our condolences to Robin’s family, his friends, and everyone who found their voice and their verse thanks to Robin Williams."
Williams rose to fame in the late 1970s on TV's "Mork and Mindy," a sitcom spinoff of Gary Marshall's hit series "Happy Days" on which Williams originated the role of the alien character Mork. Williams devoted much of his time to Comic Relief, a non-profit organization dedicated to ending homelessness, for which Williams -- along with Whoopi Goldberg and Billy Crystal -- hosted frequent televised fundraisers beginning in 1986. But despite his comedy origins and penchant for improvisation, Williams may be best remembered for his dramatic roles in movies including 1989's "Dead Poets Society" and 1997's "Good Will Hunting," for which Williams earned the Best Supporting Actor Oscar.