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Christopher Lawford Dead: John F. Kennedy’s Nephew Dies at 63

Christopher Lawford Dead
Christopher Kennedy Lawford attends the Annual Brent Shapiro Foundation For Alcohol And Drug Prevention Summer Spectacular at a Private Residence on September 9, 2017 in Beverly Hills, California. Greg Doherty/Getty Images

Christopher Lawford, an actor and the nephew of John F. Kennedy, has died at age 63.

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Former U.S. Representative Patrick J. Kennedy told The Associated Press that Lawford died of a heart attack on Tuesday, September 4, in Vancouver, Canada.

Kerry Kennedy also shared the news on Twitter Wednesday, September 5. “We mourn the loss of my cousin Christopher Lawford, Rest in Peace,” she tweeted. “Pictured here with our family at the 2004 Democratic Convention and with his wonderful son, David.” Kerry is the late Robert F. Kennedy’s daughter.

Christopher Lawford Dead
President John F. Kennedy (R) arrives for Mass at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Hyannis on August 26, 1962. Following their uncle to the service are (left to right) Christopher Lawford, Maria Shriver, and Sydney Lawford Bettmann Archive via Getty Images

Patricia Kennedy — the 35th president’s sister — and Peter Lawford, an English actor, were Christopher’s parents. TMZ reported on Wednesday that he died after suffering a medical emergency at a yoga studio.

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Christopher appeared in All My ChildrenGeneral HospitalThe O.C.Frasier and Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines. The actor’s most recent credit was the 2008 film Eavesdrop.

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The author was open about his struggles with substance abuse in the ‘70s and ‘80s. “I had friends trying to get me to use LSD in seventh grade. I grew up with an ethic of trying to do good in the world, and I said no,” he wrote in his 2016 book, When Your Partner Has an Addiction: How Compassion Can Transform Your Relationship (And Heal You Both in the Process), the Chicago Sun-Times reported. “Then my Uncle Bobby was shot. Next fall they asked me again and I said sure.”

He later became sober and helped others with similar issues. As Patrick, who battled cocaine and alcohol addiction as a student and sought treatment for Oxycontin addiction in 2006, explained on Wednesday, “He was the absolute cornerstone of my sobriety, along with my wife. He was the one who walked me through all the difficult days of that early period.”

Christopher married Mercedes Miller in 2014 and was the father of David, 31, Savannah, 28, and Matthew, 23, with his first wife, Jeannie Olsson.

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