Kelly Preston, actress and wife of John Travolta, has died following a 2-year battle with breast cancer

Actress Kelly Preston passed away after losing a fight against breast cancer, her husband John Travolta said in a post on Sunday on Instagram. She was 57 years old.

Preston has been fighting breast cancer for two years, Travolta said, and “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.”

In an exclusive with PEOPLE, a family representative said that Preston passed away on Sunday morning. “Choosing to keep her fight private, she had been undergoing medical treatment for some time, supported by her closest family and friends,” spokesman said PEOPLE.

The actress has not been photographed publicly at a major event since June 2018, when she walked with her husband on the red carpet to the premiere of his film “Gotti” in which he portrayed the late gangster John Gotti, and she played his wife Victoria Gotti.

CANNES, FRANCE – MAY 15: Kelly Preston and John Travolta attend the photocall for “Rendezvous With John Travolta – Gotti” during the 71st annual Cannes Film Festival at Palais des Festivals on May 15, 2018 in Cannes, France. (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)

Preston was born in Honolulu, in the family of Kelly Kamalelehua Smith. She studied acting at the University of Southern California, and then shot several episodic television commercials, including CHiPs and Roseanne.

This led to the role of Mary Lee in the short television series “For Love and Honor.”

Hollywood drew attention to Kelly Preston in 1988, when she starred in the role of Marnie Mason, the love interest of the character Arnold Schwarzenegger in the comedy “Twins,” and the film also starred Danny De Vito.

In the same year, she met Travolta during a screen test for a movie “The Experts.”

During a 2018 interview on “Live with Kelly and Ryan,”, Preston talked about how she and Travolta fled to Paris in 1991 after their plans for a wedding in New York became unmanageable.

“The wedding got so big and so crazy,” Preston said. “And I thought once the florist’s assistant got an assistant, I was done.”

She said that they discovered that they had to be residents of Paris for the marriage to be legal, and therefore they also got married in the USA.

She was previously married to an actor Kevin Gage from 1985 to 1987 and had high profile romances with George Clooney and Charlie Sheen (with whom she was briefly engaged) before she married Travolta.

Preston also starred in classic 90s films such as “Jerry Maguire” and “For Love of the Game.”

In 1992, she and Travolta welcomed their first child, son Jett, who died in 2009 following a seizure, while the family vacationed in the Bahamas.

US actor John Travolta (2ndR), his wife US actress Kelly Preston (L) and their children Ella Bleu Travolta (R) and Benjamin Travolta pose as they arrive on May 15, 2018 for the screening of the film “Solo : A Star Wars Story” at the 71st edition of the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, southern France. (Photo by Alberto PIZZOLI / AFP) (Photo credit should read ALBERTO PIZZOLI/AFP via Getty Images)

Ella’s daughter followed in 2000 and son Benjamin, who was born in 2010.

Preston told Health magazine that she was about to become a mother again at 48, and said that she and Travolta were trying to conceive a child.

“When I found out I was pregnant, I was floored,” People magazine reported her as telling Health. “I’d snuck out of bed and then came back and woke Johnny up in bed. We both started crying. It was wonderful.”

She acted less in the years following the birth of Benjamin, especially as a guest star in the series “CSI: Cyber” and the film “Gotti” with her husband.

Preston and Travolta were the two most influential members of the Church of Scientology, and last week US Weekly reported that the couple told in a publication about their marriage, the loss of Jett and how the church helped them cope.

“The church never left our sides for two years,” Travolta reportedly said. “I don’t know if I would have made it through without their support.”

Preston and Travolta’s daughter, Ella Travolta, posted a tribute to her mother on Instagram “I have never met anyone as courageous, strong, beautiful and loving as you. 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. 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 finished his post by saying, “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”


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