Celebrities React to Treat Williams’ Death at 71

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Celebrities React to Treat Williams’ Death at 71

Celebrities across Hollywood are paying their respects to Treat Williams after he died Monday following a motorcycle accident.

In the wake of the tragic news, tributes poured in — both to PEOPLE and on social media — from Williams’ friends and costars, including Melissa Gilbert, Wendell Pierce and Kim Cattrall.

“This is not real. It can’t be. Oh, This one hurts. #rip #treatwilliams” Gilbert wrote in an Instagram post alongside a photo of the actor.

Several stars reacted to the news in the comments section of Gilbert’s post. Rosie O’Donnell made reference to Williams’ role in Hair, writing: “claude hooper bukaski – i loved him” (Williams played George Berger in the film.)

Facts of Life actress Mindy Cohn commented “💔” while Jonathan Bennett wrote, “Oh my god”. Patti Stanger also expressed her sadness, writing, “I’m so upset! I met Treat at Hallmark [he] was the most loveliest man! 😢”

Beverley Mitchell commented, “Noooooo this is so sad! 😢 Treat was incredible and sooo missed! 💔” and Joely Fisher added, “F—ing awful”

In addition to his comment on Instagram, Bennett also shared a statement with PEOPLE, honoring Williams as “the definition of a showman.”

“Working with and being around Treat was such a special thing that I can’t explain. It was like lightning in a bottle,” Bennett said. “All he ever wanted to do was make you laugh and entertain you. He was the definition of a showman and brought so much joy to all of us by doing what he loved doing. He is who I looked up to as an actor and a human. My heart is so heavy right now.”

Kim Cattrall shared a photo of Williams and wrote beside it, “I’m in shock! RIP Dear Treat. My condolences to Pam, Gilles, Ellie and the family. A wonderful actor and friend.”

In a tweet of his own, Wendell Pierce remembered Williams for being “kind and generous.”

“Treat Williams was a passionate, adventurous, creative man,” he wrote. “In a short period of time, he quickly befriended me & his adventurous spirit was infectious. We worked on just 1 film together but occasionally connected over the years. Kind and generous with advice and support. RIP”

Treat Williams.

Michael Bezjian/WireImage

Justine Bateman shared a photo of the two together and tweeted alongside it: “Working with Treat Williams in Mamet’s ‘Speed the Plow’ at Williamstown in ‘91 was the start of great friendship. Damn it, damn it. Treat, you were the best. Love you.”

Sharing a photo of himself with Williams, actor James Woods wrote, “Treat and I spent months in Rome filming Once Upon a Time in America. It can be pretty lonely on the road during a long shoot, but his resilient good cheer and sense of humor was a Godsend. I really loved him and am devastated that he’s gone. #RIP #TreatWilliams”

Hallmark also paid tribute to Williams, who appeared in several of their projects over the years.

“We are heartbroken over the passing of Treat Williams, a beloved member of our Hallmark family and an immense talent who captured the hearts of millions,” the network said in a statement to PEOPLE. “It was a privilege to have worked with Treat, who brought to life so many memorable characters over the years. We will remember him for the joy he brought to our screens, and the legacy he leaves behind. We extend our sincerest condolences to his family, friends and loved ones.”

Billy Baldwin wrote a touching tribute on Twitter, remembering the late actor for all his great qualities.

“He had it all. Smart. Talented. Funny. Charming. Successful. Handsome. Compassionate. Heart of gold. And that name… Treat Williams,” he wrote. “He truly and deeply cared about what’s going on here in America and around the world. Climate change, social justice, freedom, truth, tolerance… love.”

“Beloved by his family, friends, fans, colleagues… his community. A terrible loss. You will be missed. Rest in power Treat,” Baldwin added.

Williams’ death was confirmed to PEOPLE on Monday evening by his agent of 15 years, Barry McPherson. The actor was 71.

“He was killed this afternoon. He was making a left or a right [and] a car cut him off,” McPherson said. “I’m just devastated. He was the nicest guy. He was so talented.”

“He was an actor’s actor. Filmmakers loved him. He’s been the heart of the Hollywood since the late 1970s,” McPherson continued. “He was really proud of his performance this year. He’s been so happy with the work that I got him. He’s had a balanced career.”

Jacob Gribble, the fire chief for Dorset, Vermont, told PEOPLE the crash happened on Monday around 5 p.m. near Dorset, Vermont. Per Gribble, investigators believe the driver of a car was turning and didn’t see Williams’ motorcycle. WIlliams was the only person hurt and a LifeNet helicopter was summoned to airlift him to a hospital in New York. The Vermont State Police also put out a press release later on Monday, confirming Williams’ identity and the details surrounding the crash.

Treat Williams.

Rachel Luna/Getty

With more than 120 credits to his name, Williams’ career extended over four decades. He made his film debut in 1975 in the thriller Deadly Hero. From there, he began to take on more film roles, including 1979’s Hair, which earned him his first Golden Globe nomination for new star of the year – actor. He later earned another Golden Globe nom for best actor in a motion picture drama for his role in 1981’s Prince of the City.

In 2002, he began portraying the leading role of Dr. Andrew “Andy” Brown on The WB’s Everwood. He starred on the series for all four seasons, and even earned himself a SAG Award nomination for outstanding performance by a male actor in a drama series in 2003-04.

Other credits of his include Steven Spielberg’s 1941, Heart of Dixie, Blue Bloods, The Late Shift, Chicago Fire, Chesapeake Shores, Hallmark’s The Christmas House, and Netflix’s Dolly Parton’s Christmas on the Square and The Noel Diary.

The actor is survived by his wife, actress Pam Van Sant, and their two children, Gill and Ellie.

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