It has been just a couple of months since John Travolta lost his wife of nearly 30 years, actress Kelly Preston, to breast cancer. Preston was 57 at the time of her death and shared three children with the Grease star.
“On the morning of July 12, 2020, Kelly Preston, adored wife and mother, passed away following a two-year battle with breast cancer,” a family rep told PEOPLE. “Choosing to keep her fight private, she had been undergoing medical treatment for some time, supported by her closest 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.”
Travolta also shared the news in a touching post saying that his wife had lost her courageous battling breast cancer after two years and told his fans that he would be taking a break from the public eye.
“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,” Travolta wrote.
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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. All my love, JT
The couple’s daughter Ella also took to social media to remember her mom whom she called “courageous, strong, beautiful and loving.”
“Anyone who is lucky enough to have known you or to have ever been in your presence will agree that you have a glow and a light that never ceases to shine and that makes anyone around you feel instantly happy. Thank you for being there for me no matter what,” the 20-year-old wrote. “Thank you for your love. Thank you for your help and thank you for making this world a better place. You have made life so beautiful and I know you will continue to do so always. I love you so much mama.”
John Travolta broke his social media silence on August 21, 2020, to share a video of how he and his daughter are honoring his wife’s memory. In the clip, John and Ella are sharing a dance, both smiling as John twirls her.
“My daughter [Ella Travolta] and I dancing in memory of momma. One of Kelly’s favorite things, dancing with me,” John captioned the video.
John Travolta and Kelly Preston married twice in 1991. although the first wedding wasn’t technically legal.
“We were going to have a huge wedding in New York and there were all of these plans and people were like, ‘Where am I going to sit and all of this stuff’… the wedding got so big and crazy and I thought, once the florist’s assistant got an assistant, I was done,” Preston recalled in a 2018 interview on Live With Kelly and Ryan. “We ran away, eloped, and went to Paris.”
She explained that their first wedding wasn’t technically legal so they had a second wedding on U.S. soil in Daytona Beach, Florida. “You have to live in Paris for I think it’s four or five years to legally get married there.”
In a 2018 interview, Preston gushed about being married to Travolta, saying there were “too many best things” about being married to the star. But, shared that one of her favorite things was dancing with him.
“His lips, dancing, fun, laughing. [We still dance] all the time,” she said on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen. “Kids dance with us, we dance at the house. We go out dancing. Yeah, I love it.”
Watch Kelly Preston talk about being married to John Travolta in the video below.