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Old 01-13-2004, 11:00 PM
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Unhappy Spalding Gray

Actor-Writer Spalding Gray Missing
Tue Jan 13, 5:28 PM ET

NEW YORK - Acclaimed actor-writer Spalding Gray, who has battled depression since a 2001 car crash, was missing Tuesday after disappearing from his Manhattan home over the weekend, police said.

Police in New York City and Long Island had joined in the search for the 62-year-old actor, who is noted for his one-man shows in which he tells of his life in artful, witty monologues.

Gray keeps homes in New York City and in the Hamptons.

Police confirmed that neither Gray nor his wife, Kathleen Russo, had visited their Long Island home since Christmas, said Southampton police Lt. William Armstrong.

His wife reported Gray missing over the weekend. Police were also checking a report that Gray may have been planning a ski trip to Colorado.

A head-on car crash during a 2001 vacation in Ireland left Gray disheartened and in poor health, and he tried jumping from a bridge near his Long Island home in October 2002.

He was twice hospitalized for depression after the crash, and his suicide attempt canceled the run of a new solo piece, "Black Spot." Gray's mother committed suicide when she was 52.

New York police, who were leading the investigation, offered no details on the search for Gray, who also appeared on Broadway and in films including "Beaches" (1988) and "Kate and Leopold" (2001). In the 1993 Steven Soderbergh (news) film "King of the Hill," Gray plays an eccentric bachelor who kills himself.

Gray won an Obie for his one-man show "Swimming to Cambodia," based in part on his work on the film "The Killing Fields." The monologue was later turned into a movie. He also co-founded the experimental Wooster Group theater, and appeared in a Tony-winning revival of "Our Town."

In his monologue "It's a Slippery Slope," Gray tells the audience he had to overcome a deep depression associated with his turning 52 — the age his mother was when she committed suicide. It also weaves in reminiscences about boarding school and college days in New England, life in New York City and learning how to ski.

"When I'm doing my monologue, I'm in my element," he said in a 1997 Associated Press interview. "I am most me when I'm on stage. I'm getting closer to enjoying life. I tell my edited life story with ... more energy than the way I live my life."

This is terrible. My prayers go out to his friends and family and for his safe return.
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Old 01-13-2004, 11:28 PM
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Depression is a very tragic thing when it goes untreated. It is so sad how many people just can't get the help that they need.
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