Icon Larry King has died at age 87, leaving behind an estranged wife and three adult children — son Larry Jr., 58, from his marriage to Annette Kaye; and sons Chance, 21, and Cannon, 20, from his marriage to Shawn King.
King’s death was announced on his official Twitter page, with a statement that read, “With profound sadness, Ora Media announces the death of our co-founder, host, and friend Larry King, who passed away this morning at age 87 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.”
King’s death came weeks after it was reported that he was battling the coronavirus, according to USA Today, though it is unclear if his cause of death has been attributed to the virus. According to the report from USA Today, King was moved to the ICU on New Year’s Eve but was moved out of intensive care in early January.
King had an active love life; he tied the knot eight times with seven different women. At the time of his death, King was married to Shawn King, whom he wed in 1997. In 2019, King filed for divorce from Shawn, according to USA Today, but the divorce was never finalized. The two were working out their agreement and were due in court later this year, according to Page Six.
King fathered four children — son Larry Jr., daughter Chaia with wife Alene Akins, and sons Chance and Cannon — and adopted a fifth, Akins’ son, Andy. In 2020, Andy and Chaia passed away within weeks of one another. King released a statement on their deaths in August.
“It is with sadness and a father’s broken heart that I confirm the recent loss of two of my children, Andy King, and Chaia King. Both of them were good and kind souls and they will be greatly missed,” he shared on his social media accounts.
King also had five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren, according to Grandparents.com.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Larry & Shawn King Were Due in Court in April to Finalize Their Divorce
Just last month, it was reported that Larry King agreed to pay Shawn King $33,000 per month in spousal support. He also had agreed to pay her a one-time lump sum of $20,000, according to court documents obtained by Page Six.
The agreement was meant to be temporary until the two met in court in April of this year.
As for Larry King’s reason for filing for divorce, he said that the 26-year age gap between himself and Shawn caused some issued, Page Six reported. He also said that she was a “religious Mormon” and he was an “agnostic atheist” which caused “little problems.” At the end of the day, Larry said that he and Shawn just “didn’t get along.”
In September 2019, Shawn King chatted with Daily Mail TV about her husband’s divorce filing, saying she was completely devastated by it.
“He’s going through a lot right now … his health issues, that can really shake you to your core, it shook me to my core to see him so vulnerable and he doesn’t remember two solid weeks of time. It’s life, it’s real, it’s not fun,” she said at the time, becoming emotional. “I’m sad, I never expected to be at this place in my life, in our lives and have this happen in such a public way. I don’t think, again I’m not in Larry’s head, I refuse to believe that he intended to humiliate me. It’s strange, I can’t quite wrap my head around it, but it is what it is … it hurts,” she added.
Shawn King was Larry’s seventh wife. He was married eight times in total, marrying his third wife, Alene, twice. After his second divorce from Alene in 1972, he married and split from Freda Miller, Annette Kaye, Mickey Sutphin, Sharon Lepore and Julie Alexander before settling down with Shawn in 1997. The couple filed for divorce in 2010 but were able to work through their differences. Things seemed to be going well until Larry King filed for divorce again in 2019.
2. Larry King’s Son, Andy, Died of a Heart Attack on July 28, 2020
Larry King adopted his son, Andy, after marrying Andy’s mom, Alene Akins.
On July 28, 2020, Andy, whose full name was Louis Andrew King, died following a heart attack. At the time of his death, Larry King was too ill to travel to Florida for the burial services. He watched the service via video. Andy was buried in Gainesville, Florida, in a “Buddhist-style funeral,” according to the Daily Mail.
Andy’s daughter Jillian told the Daily Mail that her grandfather was very upset at the time. She went on to talk about the grief that she was feeling, following the sudden death of her dad.
“I was out of town because my husband’s father had passed away so we were up in Kentucky taking care of his funeral when I heard the news. My dad passed away July 28. We’re assuming it was a heart attack but there wasn’t ever an autopsy. I was in disbelief when I heard. Chaia, with everything she was going through, was more expected. At least we had time to prepare. But there was no warning with him. It was a shock,” Jillian told the outlet. Chaia, King’s daughter and Jillian’s aunt, had been battling lung cancer at the time.
3. Chaia King Died on August 20, 2020, Following a Battle With Cancer
Three weeks after Andy’s death, Larry King’s daughter Chaia died. She had been battling lung cancer.
Chaia’s mother was also Alene Akins. Akins was a former Playboy bunny. She died in 2017.
“[Chaia] loved animals, she loved to travel, she loved people. She had a very strong faith belief. She was close to Larry. Chaia had been battling cancer for a while. It was just her time I guess. She picked to be buried how her mother was buried, in the same cemetery next to her with a natural burial as well,” Larry King’s granddaughter Jillian told the Daily Mail.
Chaia and her dad co-wrote a children’s book, Daddy Day, Daughter Day, which was published in 1997. Little else is known about Chaia, who lived a private life away from her dad’s spotlight.
4. Chance & Cannon King Are Larry King’s Youngest Sons & Are Both Avid Baseball Players
Chance King graduated from IMG Academy in 2017. He played baseball throughout his high school years and is a huge fan of the Los Angeles Dodgers, not unlike his dad.
In 2017, Chance underwent hip surgery after he suffered a torn labrum.
Cannon King is Larry King’s youngest son. He graduated from high school in 2018, and headed off to college. Cannon also played baseball in high school and is also a Dodgers fan. In 2018, Cannon set off on a mission to North Carolina as part of his religious duties as a Mormon.
“Big day yesterday. Cannon’s mission call was lost in the mail, so we picked it up in person! So proud of him. He’ll be serving in Charlotte, North Carolina. About an hour drive from where his cousin, Dallen is serving,” Cannon’s mom, Shawn, wrote on Instagram at the time. He was “called home early,” according to Shawn, confirming that he left North Carolina in the summer of 2019 to be with his family.
At the time their parents had filed for divorce, both Chance and Cannon found themselves in the middle of a media frenzy. Reports began circulating that the boys had encouraged their dad to file paperwork for various reasons, including the rumor that their mom wanted to steal their inheritance. Larry King denied the reports, saying the rumors were “ludicrous,” according to USA Today.
Both boys also spoke out about the reports, saying they were false. Cannon and Chance have both deleted their respective Instagram accounts in the time since.
5. Larry King Jr. Owns a Golf Club in Florida & Was Set to Open a Pizza Shop With His Dad
Larry King Jr. lives a quiet life in Florida. According to the Daily Mail, King Jr. is married and has three kids of his own.
King Jr. lives in Lutz, about 14 miles north of Tampa. He runs the Club at Cheval, a golf club in the area.
“I’ve never introduced myself as Larry King’s son. It’s always been ‘Larry.’ Meet people on who you are on your own terms, not who your dad is, because them people are going to forget who you are,” he told Bay News 9 in an interview published a few days ago.
King Jr. was optimistic that his father would be released from the hospital in the coming days. The two were planning on opening a new pizza chain, the first of which would be located at Cheval golf club, in February.
The Daily Mail also reported that he has worked as the head of The Larry King Cardiac Foundation in California.
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