Actress Kelly Preston, the wife of John Travolta, has died at the age of 57 from breast cancer.
In her decades-long career, Preston starred in blockbuster films such as Twins (1988), Jerry Maguire (1996), and For Love of the Game (1999).
LGBTQ+ audiences might know Preston most for her roles in Citizen Ruth (1996), where she plays the girlfriend of Swoosie Kurtz’s lesbian pro-choice activist and spy; and Eulogy (2004), where she’s in a lesbian relationship with Famke Janssen despite her homophobic sister’s (Debra Winger) disapproval. In a twist of events, we find out later in the film that Winger’s antigay character is attracted to women.
News of her death was revealed by Travolta, who took to Instagram this morning, writing:
"It is with a very heavy heart that I inform you that my beautiful wife Kelly has lost her two-year battle with breast cancer. She fought a courageous fight with the love and support of so many. My family and I will forever be grateful to her doctors and nurses at MD Anderson Cancer Center, all the medical centers that have helped, as well as her many friends and loved ones who have been by her side. Kelly’s love and life will always be remembered. I will be taking some time to be there for my children who have lost their mother, so forgive me in advance if you don’t hear from us for a while. But please know that I will feel your outpouring of love in the weeks and months ahead as we heal."
According to People magazine, a family rep explained that Preston chose to “keep her fight private” as she underwent medical treatment for some time with the support of family and friends.
"She was a bright, beautiful and loving soul who cared deeply about others and who brought life to everything she touched. Her family asks for your understanding of their need for privacy at this time,” the rep continued.
Preston and Travolta had three children together: Ella, 20, Benjamin, 9, and Jett, who died in 2009 at the age of 16 from a seizure while the family was on vacation.
In her final Instagram post, Preston posted a family selfie to ring in Father’s Day, writing, "Happy Father’s Day to the best one I know, we love you,”alongside Ben and Ella as well as a black-and-white photo of Travolta and Jett.