“Our family is sad to announce that after an unexpected and rapid illness, Paul Giffin Forste passed away yesterday at age 76,” a rep for the Sex and the City alum, 57, told Us Weekly on Thursday, September 29. “In his last moments he was surrounded with the love and gratitude of his adored wife Barbara of 54 years, and children, including Sarah Jessica Parker.”
The statement continued: “Paul will be remembered with the spirit of loving kindness which was his faith, his special delight in his 13 grandchildren, and his sustained belief in making the world a more charitable, tolerant and beautiful place for all.”
The new of Forste’s death came less than 24 hours after Parker missed the New York City Ballet’s 10th Annual Fall Fashion Gala on Wednesday, September 28, due to a “sudden devastating family situation.” The And Just Like That star is the vice chair of the ballet’s board of directors and has participated in the gala since it began in 2012.
Forste married the Emmy winner’s mother, Barbara Parker, when Sarah Jessica was 3 years old. The couple raised the actress along with her seven siblings. The Family Stone star has been open about the fact that her family sometimes struggled to make ends meet.
“We were on welfare,” the Divorce alum told The New York Times in 2000. “I remember being poor. There was no great way to hide it. We didn’t have electricity sometimes. We didn’t have Christmases sometimes, or we didn’t have birthdays sometimes, or the bill collectors came, or the phone company would call and say, ‘We’re shutting your phones off.'”
The SJP Collection designer later explained that she wouldn’t change anything about her childhood despite the difficulties. “There was love,” she told People in 2017. “[There was] culture, art, lots to do always. … For the most part, we had everything we needed. Not always, but for the most part. Not having everything you want is a blessing. I think wanting is, like, a great gift.”
The Pretty Matches founder noted that she tries to remind her own children to appreciate what they have. The Golden Globe winner shares son James, 19, and twins Marion and Tabitha, 13, with husband Matthew Broderick.
“Things they want, I think they should yearn for,” the Ohio native explained. “I think it’s good to pine for something so that when you get it, it has such meaning that you aren’t casual about the possession.”