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How Did Dana Reeve Die? Christopher Reeve's Wife Secured the Future of Her 13-Year-Old Son before Passing

Busayo Ogunjimi
May 19, 2022
04:45 P.M.
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Christopher Reeve had three meaningful relationships with three different women before he passed, but only one of them was with him romantically. After his death, she made plans to secure their child's future before her own bizarre demise.


Christopher Reeve was well known for his great looks back in the day, so it was no surprise that several women claimed to have loved him in one way or the other.

Among those ladies is Jane Seymour, who once confessed that she "fell madly in love" with Christopher on-screen and off the set while they filmed the 1980 drama "Somewhere in Time."

Christopher Reeve and Dana Reeve at the screening of "House Of D" on May 7, 2004 in New York City | Source: Getty Images


They had both been single, and even though their chemistry was quite apparent in the film, Seymour said they were very lowkey about it.

It was a beautiful affair, but it all came crashing down when she discovered that the actor was expecting a child with his former girlfriend, Gae Exton.

Christopher Reeve on January 20, 1984 in the UK | Source: Getty Images


Ironically, the news came just as they were preparing to film a breakup scene, and it was that same day they ended what was between them. However, they stayed close friends until the "Village of the Damned" actor passed away.

Seymour even went as far as naming her son Kristopher in honor of her late friend, but neither she nor Exton was the woman he spent his last years loving. Indeed, that honor is reserved for a woman named Dana Reeve; What happened to her?

Christopher Reeve receiving his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1997 | Source: Getty Images



Dana Reeve had been 44 when she passed away. The woman had been a vibrant ball of sunny energy loved by those who had the privilege of spending time with her, and when news of her passing spread, fans were shocked.

Dana gave up the ghost on a late Monday at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Medical Center of Lung Cancer, where she had been battling to fight off the nasty disease even though she had never been a smoker.

Dana Reeve during Time Magazine's 100 Most Influential People Celebration in New York City, New York, United States. | Source: Getty Images


Until that point, she had been the face of her late husband's foundation, devoted to finding new treatments for the paralysis Christopher had to endure after he fell off a horse. She announced her diagnosis in August 2005 and stated that it was yet another journey.

The announcement triggered an outpour of sympathy from her admirers, but her death came as a shocker because just days before, Dana had been looking healthy and happy.

Christopher Reeve and Dana Reeve during Christopher Reeve and Dana Reeve at Central Park West - May 2, 1989 at Central Park West in New York City, New York, United States. | Source: Getty Images



Dana, along with those closest to her, had been hopeful that she would survive the cancer she had been fighting, but at the same time, she was smart enough to make preparations for her only son with Christopher, Will.

According to Fox News, she planned for him to stay with a local family in Bedford, New York, even though her siblings and Christopher's siblings were willing to take the boy in.

According to sources close to her, Dana chose this because her son was already good friends with their son, and she wanted him to be as comfortable as possible.



Christopher Reeve lost his ability to walk and became dependent on machines to survive after he fell off his horse during an equestrian competition held on May 27, 1995. The fall left him paralyzed from the neck down, and he had been a young man of 42.

Doctors told him it would be impossible to recover the use of his body, but it could have been worse. According to reports, the fall had been so brutal that he would have died immediately if the actor had fallen one centimeter more to the left.

Christopher Reeve and Dana Reeve during the 13th Annual "A Magical Evening" Gala Hosted by The Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation at Marriot Marquis in New York City, New York, United States. | Source: Getty Images


However, the injuries were so extreme and the news so tragic that even his mother had begged doctors to withdraw his mechanical ventilation, which helped develop an appreciation for the possibility of ending his life.

That fall changed his life forever and started a legacy that has seen many other lives uplifted, and hopefully, this will continue in the absence of the couple who were the driving force behind it for years.


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