He was a casual friend of John Belushi, and the Saturday Night Live comic's death in 1982 from a drug overdose, which happened the morning after the two had partied together, along with the birth of his own son Zak, prompted him to quit drugs and alcohol: "Was it a wake-up call? Oh yeah, on a huge level. The grand jury helped, too." Williams later said of Belushi's death, "It sobered the shit out of me." Williams turned to exercise and cycling to help alleviate his depression shortly after Belushi's death; according to bicycle shop owner Tony Tom, Williams said, "cycling saved my life."
The Iraqis, realising that the Iranians were planning to attack, decided to preempt them with Operation al-Fawz al-'Azim (Supreme Success) on 19 March. Using a large number of tanks, helicopters, and fighter jets, they attacked the Iranian buildup around the Roghabiyeh pass. Though Saddam and his generals assumed they had succeeded, in reality the Iranian forces remained fully intact.
Iran's next major offensive, led by then Colonel Ali Sayad Shirazi , was Operation Fath-ol-Mobeen (Undeniable Victory). On 22 March 1982, Iran launched an attack which took the Iraqi forces by surprise: using Chinook helicopters, they landed behind Iraqi lines, silenced their artillery, and captured an Iraqi headquarters. The Iranian Basij then launched "human wave" attacks, consisting of 1,000 fighters per wave. Though they took heavy losses, they eventually broke through Iraqi lines. Operation Undeniable Victory was an Iranian victory; Iraqi forces were driven away from Shush, Dezful and Ahvaz. The Iranian armed forces destroyed 320–400 Iraqi tanks and armored vehicles in a costly success.