Gary Coleman suffered the fall that later killed him after undergoing an intense 4-hour dialysis session, his close friend tells the new issue of Us Weekly (on stands Wednesday).
Pal Jeremy Spence says Coleman, 42, drove himself to the hospital Wednesday morning to undergo his usual thrice-weekly dialysis to treat his congenital kidney disease. (The disease caused him to grow to just 4-foot-8, and receive two kidney transplants as a child.)
After returning to the Santaquin, Utah home he shares with his wife, Shannon Price, 24, around 3 p.m., Colemen slipped and hit his head, causing a one-inch gash. Price called an ambulance shortly after, Spence says.
"Dialysis had taken a lot out of him that day,” Spence told Us. "He just wanted to go home, but he was pretty weak. He had no strength at all."
Coleman’s fall caused intracranial bleeding, and he slipped into a coma and was put on life support Thursday. He died at 12:05 p.m. Friday at a Provo, Utah hospital, surrounded by his wife and other family members.
"Thousands of emails have poured in to the hospital. This has been so comforting to the family to know how beloved he still is," his wife wrote in a letter read by her brother, Shawn, at a press conference Friday afternoon.