It is said that losing a child is the worst thing a parent could ever go through. We all know that’s not how it’s supposed to work, that kids aren’t supposed to die before their parents, but sometimes such tragedies do happen. And they happen to families from all walks of life. In fact, there are many, many celebrities who have suffered through the untimely death of a child.
Bobbi Kristina Brown, 22, daughter of the late iconic songstress Whitney Houston and R&B singer Bobby Brown, died Sunday after being found unconscious in a bathtub in her Georgia home six months ago. The mysterious circumstances surrounding Brown’s death are eerily similar to those surrounding her mother’s, who drowned in a bathtub at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, Calif., Feb. 11, 2012.
On July 14, my favorite musician Nick Cave and his wife Susie Bick lost their 15-year-old son Arthur after the boy fell from a cliff near their home in Brighton, England. As if his death wasn’t tragic enough, Arthur is also survived by his twin brother Earl.
Here are 10 other celebrities who have lost children.
Conor, the son of the guitar great and Italian model Lory Del Santo, died in 1991 when he fell out of an open window on the 53rd floor of a New York apartment building. The 4-year old’s death inspired “Tears in Heaven,” which went on to become one of Clapton’s biggest hits.
The “John Wick” actor’s girlfriend Jennifer Syme gave birth to a stillborn daughter they named Ava Archer Syme-Reeves in 1999. Syme died just 18 months later in a car accident.
While on Christmas vacation in the Bahamas in 2009, John Travolta and Kelly Preston’s son Jett died suddenly after having a seizure. The 16-year-old was autistic and had a history of seizures, and the actor said that losing him was, understandably, “the worst thing that’s ever happened in my life. … I didn’t know if I was going to make it.”
Anna Nicole Smith
Daniel Smith, beloved son of the former Playboy Playmate and Guess jeans girl, died Sept. 10, 2006 while visiting his mother in the hospital after she gave birth to his half-sister Dannielynn three days earlier. His mother ordered a second autopsy, which found that Daniel died from a lethal combo of Zoloft, Lexapro and methadone. Devastated by his death, Smith tried to climb into his coffin at his funeral. Sadly, she died of a drug overdose of her own a mere five months later.
In 1972, just weeks after Joe Biden won his first Senate election in Delaware, his first wife Neilia and baby daughter Naomi were killed in a car accident. The couple’s two sons, Beau and Hunter, were also in the car but survived the crash with injuries. Tragically, Beau died on May 30 of this year from the brain cancer he had been battling since 2010. He was 46.
While on tour in North America in 1977, the Led Zeppelin singer’s 5-year-old son Karac died of a stomach infection. The tour was immediately canceled, and Plant later said that he “didn’t want to be in Led Zeppelin.” He even contemplated becoming a teacher, but ultimately changed his mind to return to the band, which continued until drummer John Bonham died in 1980.
Andre Young Jr., son of music mogul Dr. Dre, died of a heroin and morphine overdose at his mother’s house Aug. 23, 2008. He was 20.
In 1995, Skylar, the Motley Crue singer’s daughter with mud wrestler/model Sharise Ruddell, died of stomach cancer at age 4. Neil went on to found the Skylar Neil Memorial Fund in her honor, which has since raised money and awareness for numerous children’s illnesses.
The boxer’s then-7-year-old son Miguel found his sister Exodus tangled in a cord that was dangling from a treadmill on May 25, 2009. The 4-year-old was unresponsive and died the next day.
JFK & Jackie Kennedy
On Aug. 9, 1963, Patrick, the son of President John F. Kennedy and First Lady Jackie Kennedy, died from a lung condition just two days after he was born prematurely. Originally laid to rest in Brookline, Mass., the infant’s remains and those of his sister Arabella who was stillborn in 1956 were moved to Arlington National Cemetery that December, just days after their father was assassinated in Dallas.
Nikki M. Mascali is editor of TheBlot Magazine.