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The Official Cause Of Hugh Hefner's Death Has Been Revealed

The official cause of Hugh Hefner's death has been revealed, one week after he passed away at his home in the Playboy Mansion.

According to a death certificate issued by the Los Angeles Department of Public Health, the 91-year-old died of cardiac arrest and respiratory failure after contracting septicemia - a blood infection - and drug-resistant e. coli.

The Playboy mogul had been suffering from ill health for quite some time; his former girlfriend Barbi Benton told PEOPLE that she had noticed his memory was "fading" and that even he admitted he was "in poor health" when she last saw him six months ago.

"He was an American hero. A pioneer. A kind and humble soul who opened up his life and home to the world," Hefner's widow Crystal said yesterday in an emotional statement. 

"I will feel eternally grateful to have been by his side, holding his hand, and telling him how much I love him.

"He was a beacon to the world, a force unlike anything else. There never has and never will be another Hugh M. Hefner."

Hefner was laid to rest at Westwood Village Memorial Park in LA on Saturday, leaving behind Crystal and his four children.

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