Bond girl Tanya Roberts’ devastated husband said the actress is still alive “but not for long” and said he believed she had died after a stunning hospital mix-up, The Sun has exclusively revealed.
It was widely reported on Sunday that the 65-year-old actress had passed away after her rep spoke to a number of media outlets. Her husband of 18 years has now claimed this was down to a misunderstanding at a Los Angeles hospital.
Mr O’Brien said an emotional farewell to his wife of nearly two decades on Sunday after she fell ill over Christmas and was admitted to LA’s Cedars Sinai hospital.
“I turn around and she’s completely passed out cold,” he said. “I thought that was that, she wasn’t going to recover.
“So when I came down the elevator I was distraught, I was lost, I was completely discombobulated.
“There was nobody there to guide me. I called her publicist Mike Pingel and I said I just said goodbye to Tanya.”
Afterwards, reports circulated she had died.
Mr O’Brien believed Roberts had passed but — incredibly — he told The Sun he got a call on Monday afternoon from the hospital where she is being treated, saying she is still alive.
In a deeply emotional interview speaking just outside the home where he and his wife shared their lives for more than 15 years, he said he told the caller from Cedars: “She’s dead, what do you mean?
“They said, ‘No, she’s not. She’s still alive, she’s right here’”
When asked directly about the alleged mix-up, a spokesman for Cedars Sinai told The Sun: “Due to patient confidentiality we cannot confirm or deny that anyone is a patient at Cedars Sinai.”
Roberts’s husband said he “didn’t know” who to blame for the mistake.
“If I point the finger, there’ll be three pointing back,” he said.
“I don’t know who to blame. I blame this pandemic for a lot of it.”
Fighting back tears, Mr O’Brien said he cannot return to the hospital to say another goodbye as he wishes for her to die with dignity and for her not to be kept on life support just so he can get special treatment to see her.
He said Roberts has an unspecified illness which doctors have told him began with a urinary tract infection, insisting she has not had Covid.
“Today the doctors told me that it’s best to let her die and to end her life,” he said.
“She’ll never be the same again, the tubes she has in her are very uncomfortable.
“Her kidneys are so far gone, her liver is so far gone, her gall bladder is so far gone.
“She also has a terrible blood infection. The doctors say it started out with a urinary tract infection.
“The doctors say there’s no way she’s going to be the same. She always told me she didn’t want to be an invalid.
“She said if it got to this stage, end it for me. It’s a challenge and a half, I’ve got to tell you.
“I can’t go into the hospital again, I’d have to get special permission.
“I’ve already been able to look deeply into her eyes and they said they want to give her dignity on checking out.”
He went on: “I’ve told them to do so, to not keep her on life support just so I can see her. I have seen her already, I got to hold her.
“I don’t know what I’m going to do, it breaks my heart.
“I work out of our house and we hadn’t been apart in 15 years. When we’re apart we have separation anxiety.
“I just had to turn Howard Stern off because every time we got in the car we’d listen to him. I can’t listen to it.”
The actress and model, who played Stacey Sutton in the 1985 Bond film A View to a Kill alongside Roger Moore and appeared in That ‘70s Show as Midge Pinciotti, fell ill before Christmas.
Mr O’Brien said: “The day before she fell ill she was hiking around the hills here.
“She was hiking four miles every day. She was very fit, hiking all the time.
“I thought I would be the first person to check out, not her.
“Her mother lived to 95 and she had good genes in her body. She exercised a minimum of five days a week.
“On Christmas Eve, she said she wasn’t feeling well and she thought she had Covid.
“We hadn’t left the house hardly at all in ten months so I said to her, ‘How are you sure you’ve got Covid?’
“But she was insistent so I made an appointment to get her tested locally at 1pm the next day.
“But at four in the morning she tried to get out of bed to go to the bathroom but fell and collapsed on the floor.”
Mr O’Brien said he tried to pick her up but she was unable to control her legs or arms.
“I called 911 and she was taken to Cedars but I wasn’t allowed to visit her,” he said.
“Her Covid test was negative and they put her into ICU. No visitors were allowed.
“But I talk to her on the phone then I get told she’s on ‘half oxygen’, 50 per cent, which I thought was good as before it was 90 per cent.
“I was told it was a very encouraging sign. So I’m figuring she’s going to be home in a day or two.
“Next day, there’s more good news.
“They said she might have to have a colostomy bag when she leaves hospital on her kidney for four to six weeks but they can be handled by me and in outpatients.”
But it was at this point, he said, that the confusion began.
“I don’t know if you know what it’s like over there but every day the same people aren’t treating the same people, so there’s no-one you speak to that has a frame of reference.
“Then they tell me she’s not going to get out of this, it’s end of life and if you are going to come see her, come see her.
“I was freaking out. It was just terrible, terrible.
“I go into the hospital, see her and she opened her eyes. I was like, ‘My God I got to see her eyes one more time, she opened her eyes.’
“She couldn’t speak. But I could see her eyes seeing me there and it was amazing.
“Afterwards they told me it may have been a spasm or a reflex.”
Mr O’Brien believed she was dead and called her publicist, adding: “Then it was all over the national news, but she was still alive.”
Roberts’s rep, Mr Pingel, told media outlets on Sunday that she had passed away at the weekend after “collapsing” on Christmas Eve.
He claimed to have spoken to her husband, who said he held in the hospital “one last time.”
Along with writing on his Facebook page to alert followers, Mr Pingel also sent out an official press release alleging the star had died at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.
“I’m devastated,” he said at the time. “She was brilliant and beautiful and I feel like a light has been taken away.
“She was the sweetest person you’d ever meet and had a huge heart.”
Roberts’s rep added: “She loved her fans, and I don’t think she realised how much she meant to them.”
This article originally appeared on The Sun and was reproduced with permission