Nearly six months after actress Anne Heche’s tragic death, her 14-year-old son Atlas — whom she shared with Hallmark actor James Tupper — has issued his first public statement about his mom, calling her the “brightest” person he’s ever known. The Emmy award-winning actress — whose credits included many feature films, TV series such as “Chicago PD” and “Everwood,” and multiple Hallmark Channel movies — had completed a memoir before her August 2022 death. To commemorate yesterday’s release of Heche’s final book, “Call Me Anne,” a collection of tributes from those who were close to Heche was also published, including her youngest son’s reflection.
Anne Heche’s Family Remembers Her ‘Light’
Heche died at age 53, days after her car slammed into a Los Angeles home and caught fire. Trapped in the car for more than an hour, People reported she was transported to a specialty burns ICU at West Hills Hospital. In documents obtained by Heavy, the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner officially ruled Heche’s death an accident and ruled that drugs nor alcohol were factors in the crash.
Heche left behind two sons — 20-year-old Homer Heche Laffoon, whom she shared with ex-husband Coleman Laffoon, and 13-year-old Atlas Heche Tupper, whom she shared with her ex-partner James Tupper, who has appeared in multiple Hallmark movies, including 2021’s “My Family Christmas Tree” and 2022’s “Mid-Love Crisis” with Teri Hatcher.
On January 24, 2023 — the same day Heche’s memoir was released — the Los Angeles Inquisitor published a collection of tributes from her friends and family, including the first statement from her son, Atlas.
“My mom was the brightest person I’ve ever known,” Atlas wrote. “She always knew how to solve a problem, or help a friend. She always knew the right thing to do. I cannot put into words how grateful I am or how much I miss her.”
James also provided a tribute, writing, “Anne and I were together for more than a decade, we have a beautiful son together and in that time, she was the very definition of light in our lives, always bringing fun, love and energy. She will always be remembered in our hearts and minds.”
At a book launch event in Los Angeles on January 24, James told People magazine that he’s still overcome with grief at times and that it “comes in waves.”
“I want to say that I’m doing great, but it’s been a very, very difficult time,” he said. “A very big transition and spending time with my boy and looking after him, that’s basically been my whole focus.”
Meanwhile, Homer issued a statement via Heche’s former Instagram account in early January. A judge named Homer the general administrator of Heche’s estate in November 2022, granting him permanent control over her financial assets after a legal battle with James.
On the January 5 statement he posted to Heche’s account, Homer wrote, “The amount of love, care and support shown by those on social media and IRL has been overwhelming and blessedly received – thank you. One day at a time is working for me as I’m sure the healing journey will be a long one. Your good thoughts and well wishes will continue to comfort me on my path.”
Anne Heche’s New Book is Part Memoir, Part Self-Help Workbook
Heche’s new memoir, “Call Me Anne,” has been billed as a sequel to her 2001 book, “Call Me Crazy.” According to USA Today, it was completed shortly before her death and dedicated to her sons and her “Better Together” podcast co-host Heather Duffy.
The newspaper said it’s both a collection of personal stories — including insights about her relationship with Ellen DeGeneres, alleged abuse by Harvey Weinstein, and memories of co-stars like Alec Baldwin and Harrison Ford — and a self-help workbook, with lessons Heche learned in her life she wanted to pass on to others.
In the forward, Heche wrote, “Every phase of life has had lessons for me, and my hope is that what I’ve learned might help ease the way for other people.”
According to publisher Simon & Schuster, “Anne’s personal stories are interwoven with poems, prompts, and exercises that got Anne through tough times. Readers are encouraged to try them as they navigate their own journey to self-love, acceptance, forgiveness, and faith.