Anne Heche was an American actress best known for her work in the late ’90s and early ’00s on such films as John Q, Volcano, and I Know What You Did Last Summer. The Aurora, Ohio native got her start as a teen when she began working in a theater to help her family make ends meet. Heche came from a rough childhood. Her father, whom she claims abused her from infancy till she was a teen, would eventually pass after contracting HIV. Heche says he was a closeted man. Her brother would later pass in a car accident after fallling asleep at the wheel.
A change came for the young actress when a talent scout spotted her in college after moving to Chicago and recruited her for the series As The World Turns. Her mother initially made her turn it down, hoping she would finish school, but the casting director called again months later and offered her another spot on Another World. Anne took this role against her mother’s wishes and became a successful daytime television star, scoring a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Younger Actress in a Drama Series in 1991.
The ’90s would bring Anne Heche a number of other notable roles from Murphy Brown to Donnie Brasco. However, she would eventually become most famous for a different type of role. Anne Heche would go on to date comedian and future Daytime television megastar Ellen DeGeneres. While Ellen had just recently come out as gay, Heche had only been known to date men up until that point. The duo became an item in 1997 and continued to date through 2000, even having a civil union ceremony in Vermont. They were red carpet and tabloid magnets. However, Heche would eventually leave Ellen for Coleman “Coley” Laffoon, a cameraman she met while accompanying Ellen on tour.
Anne Heche had a documented history of mental health and substance issues. The actress reportedly drove from Los Angeles to Cantua Creek in a Toyota SUV shortly after her split from Ellen, wearing only her undergarments. When she arrived, she parked the car and walked a mile to a ranch. The owner recognized her and let her in, only to later discover she was under the influence after she told him she was God and had come to take him home in a spaceship. Heche later spoke at length about how her father’s abuse had left her with severe trauma and PTSD. Heche claims that in order to cope with the memories, she created an alternate personality. Following the incident at the Ranch, she said she’d found help and had recovered.
Anne Heche has been relatively quiet over the years, with small roles on such shows as Quantico and Chicago P.D. She even did some voice acting for DC, playing Lois Lane in several Superman properties. The actress was involved in a brutal car crash on August 5th, where she reportedly slammed into her house. The horrific accident was said to have left her in critical condition, and on August 12th, it was decided to take her off life support and honor her wishes to be an organ donor. She was 53 years old and survived by her two children Atlas Heche Tupper and Homer Laffoon. The actress was unmarried after getting divorced in 2018 from Tupper’s father.
While many were shocked by the details of the accident, things became even more concerning when video footage began to surface of her appearing to try to escape from paramedics at the crash site. Anne Heche was said to be badly injured and was in a white body bag being carried away when she appeared to unzip the bag and launch her body forward towards the men carrying her. A news reporter reacted live to the display as he was covering it while it happened.
People online immediately began to speculate that the authorities were not being honest about Heche’s state. Many wondered how she could decline so rapidly if she displayed signs of being coherent at the site. “Why was she placed in a body bag while obviously still alive? Why was she pushed down and restrained while trying to get up?” asked fans. Heche was one of many women who accused Harvey Weinstein of being inappropriate towards her and was reportedly working on a documentary to expose him and men like him.