More details are in on the tragic death of acclaimed actor James Gandolfini, most notably that the cause of death has been confirmed: it was, as suspected, cardiac arrest.
“When he arrived, [James] was already in cardiac arrest. He was put under resuscitation treatment for 40 minutes, but the emergency staff failed to restart his heart, and at 23:00, he was pronounced deceased," said Dr. Claudio Modini, head of the emergency department at the Policlinico Umberto I Hospital in Rome, told the LA Times, "he could have been deceased on arrival since he was already in cardiac arrest.”
USA Today reports that he was with his family in the final moments, and that it was his 13-year-old son, Michael, who made the distress call to hotel staff.
"He just felt bad and his son called reception. [Staff] went to the room, and as soon as they saw that something was wrong they immediately called an ambulance that brought him to hospital," said hotel spokeswoman Laura Conti.
James had been traveling with his wife, Deborah Lin, his 9-month-old daughter Liliana, his son, and other family, including his sister.
At least it sounds like he had a fantastic last day on Earth, with people close to the actor telling USA Today that he'd had a fantastic day leading up to the cardiac arrest.
"We all had a marvelous day together, and when he returned to the hotel [James] went to the bathroom and that is where something happened," James's assistant Tom Richardson said, "His sister said he was still alive when the ambulance took him away."
James had been scheduled to appear at a roundtable and receive an award at Sicily's Taormina Film Festival this weekend. The festival's artistic director, who had spoken to him, gave some insight onto how he was enjoying his last days: "He was so happy to be in Italy, to reconnect with his Italian roots, and he was very excited to come here and receive this award."