True Blood Family Mourns the Death of Nelsan Ellis: ‘I Am Heartbroken’

Nelsan Ellis in True Blood. Photo: HBO

The True Blood family has taken to Twitter and Instagram to mourn the death of Nelsan Ellis. Ellis, who died Saturday, starred on the HBO drama for all seven seasons as short-order cook Lafayette Reynolds. Dozens of the show’s cast and crew offered expressions of shock and grief, as well as reminders of Ellis’s profound talents, in response to his untimely passing. Series creator Alan Ball weighed in separately with an official statement. “Nelsan was a singular talent whose creativity never ceased to amaze me.” he said. “Working with him was a privilege.” Read the rest of the reactions below.

Rutina Wesley, who played Lafayette’s cousin Tara, wrote the following poem for Ellis, via EW:

He was a lover, he loved everything which is why people didn’t understand him. That’s the beauty of it. He thought everything was beautiful. Everything. So poetic, charasmatic, an energy none can compare … one who touched so many forever, deep, in places they cannot reach …. a spirit so divine and fine … .a chameleon … transforming before you and you …. transforming because of him. He could move your soul to whole … in a moment …. an arTeest! … like nothing I’ve seen or will ever see again. A darkness wrapped up in light, tight, yearning … searching … moving seas of hearts with a smile that darts … right through you …. how I loved you … fiercely vulnerable shining beacon…stand tall my friend, rest, peace has finally found you …..

This post has been updated throughout.

True Blood Family Reacts to the Death of Nelsan Ellis