7 years ago today John Ritter died. He had collapsed a day earlier while filming his popular television show, 7 Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter. Ritter was only 54 when he died of an undiagnosed aortic dissection on his daughter’s 5th birthday. His widow, actress Amy Yasbeck, wrote a memoir about her time with Ritter titled ‘With Love and Laughter, John Ritter’.
Amy sat down with USA Today and answered a few questions about her husband and how his death has affected her family. Here’s some of what she had to say in that interview;
How are you doing seven years later?
The sadness is always present, but there’s this completely rich relationship that is always there.
Is this book a tribute to John’s memory?
It’s a love letter to John and from John. He would have loved to have been able to say goodbye and given everybody a giant hug for the giant, fabulous ride he had.
You write that some good has come out of your loss.
It’s the awareness that comes when someone in the public eye passes away from something that’s been otherwise overlooked.
How are you helping?
I’ve started the John Ritter Foundation for Aortic Health. The big focus is helping people get the correct diagnoses. Because we were lucky enough to get the information about the genetic prevalence of this, John’s brother Tom was diagnosed with an aortic aneurysm and was saved just in time.
Your daughter, Stella, was nearly 5 when her dad died. Is she like him?
She absorbed the spirit of comedy and connectiveness of her dad, which is a joy every day
I remember the day that I heard John Ritter died very well, and remember being so shocked and saddened! I have a hard time believing that it’s already been 7 years, but am happy that Amy and her daughter Stella seem to be doing so well and are using their experience to help others.