Julia Roberts' half-sister found dead after 'drug overdose'
Published 11/02/2014 | 08:02
Actor's relative was discovered dead in Los Angeles while dog-sitting for a friend.
Nancy Motes, the half-sister of actor Julia Roberts has died of an apparent drug overdose.
Her family told People Magazine that she was found dead in her home on Sunday.
Motes, 37, was the youngest sister of Julia Roberts and actor Eric Roberts and had battled with depression and obesity.
“It is with deep sadness that the family of Nancy Motes … confirms that she was found dead in Los Angeles yesterday of an apparent drug overdose,” the statement read. “There is no official report from the Coroner’s office yet. The family is both shocked and devastated.”
Motes had spoken in the past of her weight battles - she underwent gastric bypass surgery in 2010 - and the pressures of being in a family of famous actors. Her other sibiling Lisa Roberts Gillan is also an actor, and although Motes wanted to pursue a career in acting, her obesity held her back.
In an interview with The Sun last year, she said she felt like an embarrassment to Roberts because of her weight.
“When you’re in a family of very, very exceptionally beautiful people it’s intimidating. I think that growing up as Pretty Woman's little sister has definitely made me try to see the person inside and not the person outside. A lot of my life I felt judged for my weight,” she said.
In the same interview Motes claimed Roberts had not been supportive of her desire to become an actor.
“Julia did not want to see me go down that path, mostly because I was overweight," she said.
“I did a lot of auditioning, a lot of waitressing, then really could not afford the cost of living, so I went back to Georgia and focused on doing more things in theatre.”
Paramedics were called to her home on Sunday after she was found on the floor of a bathroom, according to Los Angeles County Coroner's Assistant Chief Ed Winter.
She was pronounced dead at the scene at 2:12pm, Mr Winter said.
"She has a history of some medical issues," Winter said. "Some prescription drugs were found near her body."
The case is under investigation by the coroner's officer and an autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday, Mr Winter said.