Robert Witt and Diane Witt, the parents of The Walking Dead and Orange is the New Black actress Alicia Witt, were found dead mysteriously on Tuesday in their Worcester home in Massachusetts. Alicia Witt’s parents had not been heard from in “several days,” so the actress asked one of her cousins to check in on them.
“I reached out to a cousin who lives close to my parents to check on them,” said Alicia Witt, 46. “Sadly, the outcome was unimaginable.”
Officers on the scene have not confirmed the cause of death as investigators attempt to uncover what happened to Robert Witt, 87, and his wife Diane Witt, 75. Authorities hope that the autopsy will provide them with further clues to unravel the mystery.
“I ask for some privacy at this time to grieve and to wrap my head around this turn of events, and this surreal loss,” Alicia Witt said in an official statement.
Arriving at the scene, Lieutenant Sean Murtha of the Worcester police department confirmed that “police were dispatched to the residence and discovered a male and a female deceased,” though he divulged little about the findings that could have led to Alicia Witt’s parents untimely passing.
“There were no signs of foul play,” he said and “no trauma,” adding that the case was “under investigation.”
According to reports from family members and loved ones, they recalled that the couple were having “furnace problems,” and that they were using a space heater this Winter. Authorities checked the air quality in the Worcester home and recorded no signs of toxic fumes or noxious gases.
“There were no signs of carbon monoxide,” stated Worcester Deputy Fire Chief Adam Roche.
Another neighbor allegedly told police that Robert Witt and Diane Witt had been feeling ill for “some time,” as well, but did not specify as to what kind of illness. The unnamed neighbor also mentioned that they were rarely ever seen outside the home. It is also unknown if the couple were vaccinated for Covid-19, or if the virus played any factor into their mysterious death.
According to The Telegraph, many neighbors had asked to pitch in and help after their home “fell into disrepair” from neglect, but Alicia Witt’s parents “politely refused.” One neighbor mowed their lawn and cleared the snow for them every year regardless as a measure of good faith.
Robert Witt and Diane Witt lived in Worcester for decades prior to the mysterious incident. They had two children, Ian Witt and Alicia Witt, with the latter going on to act in film and television.
Starring as a child actress at 8 years old alongside Kyle MacLachlan in the 1984 Dune adaptation by David Lynch, Alicia Witt would continue to get acting roles in Lynch projects such as Twin Peaks, where she appeared as Lara Flynn Boyle’s younger sister.
Alicia Witt has had recent stints on television, as well, including Orange is the New Black, The Walking Dead, Nashville, Twin Peaks: The Return, Two Weeks Notice, Friday Night Lights, Justified, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, and The Mentalist.
The actress is also a concert pianist and has been busy recording her new album The Conduit, as well as writing a lifestyle cookbook titled “Small Changes: A Rules-Free Guide to Add More Plant-Based Foods, Peace & Power to Your Life.”
Her mother, Diane Witt, was something of a celebrity in her time, as well, getting into the Guiness Book of World Records for growing out her hair over 10-feet long. Though Robert Witt was a science teacher at Burncoat Middle School, Diane Witt homeschooled her children, who reportedly helped her braid her record-setting hair.
Authorities are still investigating her parents’ death.