Anne Heche has been declared brain dead by doctors and her life support system will be switched off.
The actress who used to be the girlfriend of talk show host, Ellen DeGeneres, suffered a catastrophic brain injury from which she was not expected to recover after she crashed her car into two homes in LA on Friday.
According to reports, Heche, 53, smashed her blue mini into the houses at the breakneck speed of 90mph, causing one of the homes to catch on fire.
Heche suffered an anoxic brain injury following the fiery crash, which means oxygen was cut off from her brain for a number of minutes, causing part of the brain to die.
While some of her close friends speculated that the I Know What You Did Last Summer star may have been drinking before the horror crash after a photograph of her car showed a vodka bottle in the cup holder, samples of her blood instead revealed traces of cocaine and the highly potent opiate, Fentanyl.
“She needs everyone’s prayers. She is in the worst state you can imagine. Whatever you believe in, please pray for her, please,” said one of Heche’s friends after it was revealed that the actress had been in a coma for days in the Grossman Burn Center at the West Hills hospital in Los Angeles.
“It will be a miracle if she recovers from this and comes out of this coma,” added the friend.
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Sources say Heche had suffered severe burns in the high-speed crash from the blaze which took firefighters 65 minutes to “access, confine and fully extinguish”. The burns and smoke inhalation caused damage to her lungs which required surgery and a ventilator for her to breathe.
But doctors have now said that her brain would not recover from its injuries and the actress’ life support is set to be switched off.
A spokesman for the family said:
“We want to thank everyone for their kind wishes and prayers for Anne’s recovery and thank the dedicated staff and wonderful nurses that cared for Anne at the Grossman Burn Center at West Hills hospital.
“Unfortunately, due to her accident, Anne Heche suffered a severe anoxic brain injury and remains in a coma, in critical condition. She is not expected to survive.”
The representative added that Heche was a registered organ donor and that she would be kept on life support while doctors determined if any of her organs could be healthy enough to donate.
“Anne had a huge heart and touched everyone she met with her generous spirit. More than her extraordinary talent, she saw spreading kindness and joy as her life’s work – especially moving the needle for acceptance of who you love. She will be remembered for her courageous honesty and dearly missed for her light,” continued the statement.
Heche’s podcast, Better Together, which she co-hosts, was live just hours before the crash which rendered her brain dead.
During the segment, Heche and Heather Duffy slur their words as they brag about how a vodka distillery called Refined had issued the pair with free booze.
“We each have a bottle in front of us because our friends sent us a bottle of Refined and I think we even did a bad commercial for them in the beginning of our days,” says Duffy.
“Dr. Rahm said that we should be drinking vodka instead of wine,” continued Duffy.
“And we listened, and we are drinking it.”
Heche then adds:
“Today’s been a very unique day.
“I don’t know what happened, sometimes days just suck and I don’t know if you ever have them [but] some days, those no good, very bad days, and some days days just end up like this.”
Later in the show she said she had had a bad week, explaining that people had interrupted her meditating at her apartment.