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Court Dispute Turns Ugly between Robin Williams’ Widow and Three Children
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legal dispute between Susan Williams and the three children

Summary: Robin Williams’ widow and his three children have been fighting in court over details of his estate.

Tragedy is sure to expose otherwise invisible fissures in relationships, and this is clearly the case in a recent legal dispute between the children of Robin Williams from his first two marriages and the most recent wife of his third marriage. Williams, who committed suicide about six months ago, shocked the world with his parting. Widow Susan Schneider Williams claims she has not been allowed to properly grieve due to the encroaching interests of his children over Williams’ memorabilia.


Susan Williams filed papers a little before Christmas in San Francisco complaining that some of her husband’s property had been “unilaterally removed,” mere “days after Mr. William’s untimely death.” Since his death was a “shocking and emotionally charged event,” she has not been “given time to grieve her loss free from the frenetic efforts to interfere with her domestic tranquility.”

Perhaps such spats are part of the grieving process?

The widow is claiming as her own certain memorabilia unrelated to William’s acting career, such as a fossil collection, masks, and what she called his “knickknacks.”

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The children took offense to his possessions being referred to as knickknacks, saying that the graphic novels, action figures, and so forth, fueled Williams’ creativity.

“These collections were carefully amassed by Mr. Williams over his lifetime and were precious to him. As the Williams children grew, so did their father’s collections and they shared in their father’s excitement as additions were made to his collection.”

Their response, then, isn’t all too nice when it refers to the widow as displaying “the greed that appears to be driving the petitioner’s actions.”

Susan’s lawyer, Jim Wagstaffe, responded in a telephone interview Monday that she was “not somebody who has any sticky fingers,” and further that “Mr. Williams wanted his wife to be able to stay in her home and not be disrupted in her life with her children [from a previous relationship]. Compared to what the Williams children were set to receive from their father, this is a bucket of water in a lake.”

Perhaps such haggling over details is how one vents frustration over loss? Considering that Williams’ three children – Zak, 31, son of his first wife, Valerie Velardi; and Zelda, 25, and Cody, 23, daughter and son from his second wife, Marsha Garces – had been set to receive everything in a trust detailed in the will he filed in Marin County, Calif., with a modest addition of Susan more recently, the fiasco may be less concerned with pecuniary matters, and more a hope to gain control over a situation that felt out of control.

Is Susan Williams right to fight for Robin's Memorabilia?

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News Source: NBC News


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