UPDATE (12/22) -- People has obtained a copy of actor Alan Thicke's death certificate, and it states that he died of a "ruptured aorta" and "standard type A aortic dissection." He passed only minutes after the rupture.
(12/21) -- Our thoughts and prayers have been with Alan Thicke's family and fans since we learned of the actor's passing on Dec. 13. Now his wife, Tanya Callau Thicke, has opened up about the struggle of losing her husband so unexpectedly.
“It is with gut-wrenching sadness and unbelievable grief that I thank everyone from the bottom of my heart for the outpouring of love and support during this unimaginable time,” the 41-year-old widow told People in a statement.
“Through tears and smiles, our dearest of family and friends came together at our home to celebrate the life of my sweet and devoted husband Alan Thicke,” her statement continued."
“Yesterday, along with my stepsons and our combined extended family, we laid my beloved husband, soulmate, and the patriarch of our family to rest. We ask that you respect our privacy during this time of profound mourning,” she ended the statement.
Remembering Alan Thicke
The day of his death, the 69-year-old Growing Pains star was playing hockey with his son Carter. Halfway through the game, he was forced to take a seat. Thicke assured everyone that he was fine, but Carter, fearing for his father's health, requested that someone call 911.
First responders loaded Thicke onto a stretcher. At the time, he was still in good spirits, even asking his son to take a funny photo of him being carried away.
"Ah, take a shot, kiddo," said Thicke, according to the rink's VP Darin Mathewson.
Sadly, he died at the hospital.
Friends and Family Pay Tribute
Thicke's children have been very vocal about the love they had for their father.
Today I lost my best friend and my idol, and the world lost one of it's finest. You are a legend and I love you Pops. Until next time. pic.twitter.com/ZQd2NZMTx4— Carter Thicke (@CarterThicke) December 14, 2016
Carter tweeted a photo with his dad, calling him his "best friend."
Thicke's singer son Robin, from his first marriage to Gloria Loring, said his father was, "the best man I ever knew" and "the best friend I ever had."
Stars like Leonardo DiCaprio and Thicke's Growing Pains co-star Kirk Cameron attended his funeral.
In his memory, Callau Thicke has asked that all donations be made to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).