Burt Reynolds has died. According to TMZ, Reynolds was taken to a Florida hospital after going into cardiac arrest. His family was by his side, according to the outlet. He was 82 years old.
“Reynolds had heart problems for years — he underwent major heart surgery in February 2010. His rep tells us Burt had appeared extremely frail recently after being in and out of the hospital,” TMZ reports.
The legendary actor is survived by his only child, his 30-year-old son, Quinton Anderson Reynolds.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. He Was His Dad’s ‘Greatest Achievement’
Although Reynolds was one of the most successful movie stars in the world, his son was the most important thing in his life — and was the one thing that he was the most proud of.
“He is my greatest achievement. He’s a wonderful young man and is now working as a camera assistant in Hollywood. He never asked for any help with his career, he did it all himself, and I’m so proud of him. I love him very much,” Reynolds told Closer Weekly this past July.
2. He Lives a Very Private Life in California
Not much is known about Quinton, who has been shielded from the mainstream media. He spent his very early years growing up in Florida, but moved to California with his mom, after her split from Reynolds. These days, Quinton calls California home.
Quinton doesn’t appear to have any public-facing social media accounts. When he was younger, he accompanied his dad on a few red carpets, as evidenced by the photo above.
3. He Was Adopted in 1988 & the Announcement Was Made in the Newspaper
Reynolds adopted Quinton with his second wife, Loni Anderson, whom he was married to from 1988 to 1993. The adoption announcement was made in the The Palm Beach Post.
“It is true. They are waiting for the baby to be born,” Anderson’s publicist, Mickey Freeman, told the outlet at the time. “My understanding is that it could be any day,” Freeman added. Quinton was born at a California-area hospital in 1988.
Anderson and Reynolds wanted to have a biological child of their own, but never did.
“I love kids,” Anderson told the New York Daily News back in the 80s. “If I had been with the right man when I was younger, I’d have had four.”
Reynolds was 52 when he and Anderson adopted their son.
“Burt… asked me if at 52 he’ll be able to get used to the noise of a child. I told him it’s gradual,” Anderson told the New York Daily News.
4. His Parents’ Divorce Was Hard on Him & He Went Through a Rough Patch With His Dad at the Time
According to Closer Weekly, Reynolds and his son went through a tough period when Reynolds and Anderson divorced. They were, however, able to work through that difficult time and became very close in the years that followed.
“There’s nothing I can do about things that weren’t happy or good. I just try not to dwell on those. Regrets are not healthy — it’s best to try and let go of those things that can’t be changed. All of my experiences made me who I am today, and I’m grateful for the positive ones. I don’t think of my past as anything negative, and if it is negative, I’ve forgotten it,” Reynolds also told the outlet.
Indeed Reynolds’ divorce from Anderson was messy. In fact, it has been called one of the ugliest celebrity divorces of all time. It took a while for Reynolds and Anderson to move on, but eventually they were able to do so.
“You just need a break after. If it’s a messy divorce, then you need a break and you go back and you go, ‘Well there wasn’t 12 terrible years. There was just that end.’ So you go back and start thinking, ‘Oh, I remember that! Oh, we laughed so hard! Oh, that was so fun!'” Anderson told Entertainment Tonight in 2014.
5. His Mom Insisted a Nanny Was Present When He Visited His Dad in Florida
After his parents divorce, Quinton lived in California with his mom, but he would travel to Florida to spend time with his dad. During those times, Loni Anderson insisted that a nanny be on-hand.
“I’m concerned about Burt’s erratic behavior. . . . Quinton is small and I want him to be protected,” Anderson told SF Gate back in 1995.