The news of James Gandolfini's death yesterday, June 19, shocked us all. But we can only imagine the mourning of those closest to him, including his collaborators on the show that made him a household name, the critically-adored HBO hit The Sopranos.

Jamie-Lynn Sigler — who played Meadow Soprano, the daughter of James's mobster character — has released a statement describing her grief and paying tribute the late actor to Life & Style.

"This news has left me heartbroken," she writes. "I can only imagine the pain his family feels at this time, and my heart goes out to them, especially Deborah [his wife], Michael [his teenage son] and Liliana [his 8-month-old daughter].

"I spent 10 years of my life studying and admiring one of the most brilliant actors, yes, but more importantly one of the greatest men … I treasure my memories with him and feel so honored that I was an up-close witness to his greatness."

Jamie-Lynn, incidentally, is expecting a baby with fiancé Cutter Dykstra.

Source: Life & Style