Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Ted Koppel's son Andrew found dead in New York apartment

This image released by ABC shows Ted Koppel in the Nightline studios 22 November 2005 in Washington, DC.
Andrew Koppel, son of TV anchor Ted Koppel, died early Monday morning after a marathon day of drinking in New York City. He was 40. The New York Post reports Andrew went to an apartment late in the night with a new drinking buddy, Russell Wimberly, and was later found in a bedroom, unconscious and not breathing.

Belinda Caban, a resident of the apartment where Koppel died, said, "He was just really messed up when he came in. He was very drunk. I didn't understand anything he said. We took him to the bedroom and laid him down to rest."

"His complexion wasn't right. It was pale. I said to call the police," Caban said of finding Koppel later that night. "When the ambulance came, they said he was dead."

Andrew Koppel was an attorney for the New York City Housing Authority. He was Ted Koppel's only son and the third of four children.

The medical examiner has not yet determined the cause of death, and no one has been charged.

The Post reports Koppel lived with his girlfriend and their "baby daughter."

Russell Wimberly recalled meeting Koppel earlier in the day: "He had a straw hat on, and I had one on, and he said, 'Nice hat, man.' We got to talking, and he started buying me drinks. There was a lot of alcohol. He didn't take anything else [drugs] around me, and neither of us ate all day. We talked about our kids ... He said he had a kid and loved [her] a lot."

The binge led to a cab ride to Caban's apartment. Koppel and Wimberly stopped on the way to buy whiskey and beer.

"[He] wasn't feeling good," Wimberly said of Koppel. "I told him to lay down and turn the light off. He was snoring really loud. I thought he was out."

The Post notes Andrew Koppel was involved in an alcohol-related "fender bender" driving his father's Mercedes in Maryland in 1990. In 1993, he was convicted of an assault on a senator's aide in Washington, D.C., and sent to alcohol treatment.