Nelsan Ellis’ family share the heartbreaking circumstances of the ‘True Blood’ actor’s death

It's revealed the actor had struggled with alcohol addiction for years.

By Natasha Harding
Nelsan Ellis

Over the weekend the True Blood community was shook after it was announced that actor Nelsan Ellis, who played fan favourite Lafayette Reynolds, tragically passed away from heart failure.

Now Ellis’ family are sharing the details of his death, revealing that he suffered from alcohol addiction, with the hope that his story will help others fighting the same battle.
“Nelsan has suffered with drug and alcohol abuse for years,” The Hollywood Reporter writes.

“After many stints in rehab, Nelsan attempted to withdraw from alcohol on his own. 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.”

The report adds that “Nelsan was ashamed of his addiction and thus was reluctant to talk about it during his life. His family, however, believes that in death he would want his life to serve as a cautionary tale in an attempt to help others.”

“Nelsan was a gentle, generous and kind soul. He was a father, a son, a grandson, a brother, a nephew, and a great friend to those that were lucky enough to know him.”

Since the weekend, fellow actors have shared heartbreaking tributes to Ellis.