Last night (April 21), the sad news broke that actor Verne Troyer, best known for his role as Mini-Me in the Austin Powers movies, had died at the age of 49.
A lengthy statement on his Instagram and Facebook pages read, “Verne was an extremely caring individual. He wanted to make everyone smile, be happy, and laugh. Anybody in need, he would help to any extent possible. Verne hoped he made a positive change with the platform he had and worked towards spreading that message everyday.
“He inspired people around the world with his drive, determination, and attitude. On film & television sets, commercial shoots, at comic-con’s & personal appearances, to his own YouTube videos, he was there to show everyone what he was capable of doing. Even though his stature was small and his parents often wondered if he’d be able to reach up and open doors on his own in his life, he went on to open more doors for himself and others than anyone could have imagined. He also touched more peoples hearts than he will ever know.
“Verne was also a fighter when it came to his own battles. Over the years he’s struggled and won, struggled and won, struggled and fought some more, but unfortunately this time was too much. During this recent time of adversity he was baptized while surrounded by his family. The family appreciates that they have this time to grieve privately.
“Depression and Suicide are very serious issues. You never know what kind of battle someone is going through inside. Be kind to one another. And always know, it’s never too late to reach out to someone for help.
“In lieu of flowers, please feel free to make a donation in Verne’s name to either of his two favorite charities; The Starkey Hearing Foundation and Best Buddies.”
Mike Myers, who starred alongside Verne in the Austin Powers movies, was among the first of many to pay their respects to the late actor. In a statement, he said: “Verne was the consummate professional and a beacon of positivity for those of us who had the honor of working with him. It is a sad day, but I hope he is in a better place. He will be greatly missed.”
Michelle Heaton, who took part in Celebrity Big Brother alongside Verne in 2009, described him as an “absolute hero in every sense of the word”.
Warwick Davis stated that he “always admired his good humour and lovely nature in the face of adversity. Now, for the first time, he’ll be looking down on us all, and laughing!”
So sad to hear that my friend @VerneTroyer has passed away. We shared a mutual respect for each other’s work, and I always admired his good humour and lovely nature in the face of adversity. Now, for the first time, he’ll be looking down on us all, and laughing! #RIPVerneTroyer pic.twitter.com/vLGwpWTYpE
— Warwick Davis (@WarwickADavis) April 22, 2018
Leigh Francis, also known as Keith Lemon, worked with Verne on shows such as Celebrity Juice, and said that he was “gonna miss that little dude”.
Pro skater Tony Hawk thanked Verne “for all the laughs, generosity and heartfelt support” and said that he “will always be a big fan”.
Thanks for all the laughs, generosity and heartfelt support, @VerneTroyer; I will always be a big fan, and it was a huge honor when you bought my used shoes and skateboard at our @THF auction. pic.twitter.com/hv1F2LLpjd
— Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) April 21, 2018
Verne was hospitalised earlier this month with alcohol poisoning. At the time, his team shared an update on Instagram which said that he was getting the best care possible. The statement read: “Asking you to keep Verne in your thoughts and prayers. He’s getting the best care possible and is resting comfortably. Appreciate the support from family, friends, and fans around the world.”
He might have been short in stature, but Verne Troyer had a huge impact on the entertainment industry and has left an enormous imprint on many people’s hearts. Thank you for the love, light and laughs you brought to the big screen.
Our thoughts are with his family, friends and fans at this heart-breaking time.