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The son of a famous late actor and his mother, 2004 | Source: Getty Images
The son of a famous late actor and his mother, 2004 | Source: Getty Images

This Famous Actor's Son Was Orphaned at 13 - He Looks Like His Dad at 32

Junie Sihlangu
Jul 04, 2024
10:50 A.M.
  • This man's father was famous for starring in a well-known superhero film franchise.
  • An injury the star suffered led to his death and not long after his son was an orphan when his wife died.
  • The actor's lookalike son is now grown, working in a field he loves.
  • He's kept his father's legacy alive by starring in one particular 2025 movie.
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This famous actor's son was only 13 years old when he became an orphan. However, many years later, he is all grown up and reaching great heights. Meet the man who shares a striking resemblance with his father.

The late actor gets a kiss from his son on a "20/20" special interview on September 29, 1995, in New Jersey | Source: Getty Images

The late actor gets a kiss from his son on a "20/20" special interview on September 29, 1995, in New Jersey | Source: Getty Images

This late American actor, director, and activist was one of the most handsome and brilliant stars in Hollywood. His chiseled physique and stunning looks earned him the iconic movie role of Superman, also known as Clark Kent in the movies of the same name.

The titular role which the actor first took on in 1978 catapulted him to stardom, making him one of the most talked-about actors in Hollywood.

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He also took on the superhero role in the "Superman" sequels in 1980, 1983, and 1987. While working hard to achieve success in his career, the star did not neglect his love life.

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In 1987, he met the love of his life who would stay by the actor's side until his last breath. The lovebirds tied the knot in 1992, shortly after she fell pregnant with their first child. Indeed, the couple was a delight to see and one of the most admired.

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Their union was blissful, and everything continued that way until tragedy struck. On May 27, 1995, the actor and 300 other horse riders were participating in a roadblock test in Culpeper, Virginia, when he accidentally fell from a horse.

The late famous star, his wife, and son at SuperSkate on January 7, 2001, at Madison Square Garden in New York City | Source: Getty Images

The late famous star, his wife, and son at SuperSkate on January 7, 2001, at Madison Square Garden in New York City | Source: Getty Images

The "Rear Window" star fell headfirst into the ground and sustained a severe head and spinal cord injury, leaving him paralyzed from his neck down. Following the accident, the Hollywood icon spent the rest of his life in a wheelchair.

The late actor's son during "Everyone's Hero's" New York City Premiere on September 12, 2006 | Source: Getty Images

The late actor's son during "Everyone's Hero's" New York City Premiere on September 12, 2006 | Source: Getty Images

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Despite the health complications, the celebrity never stopped being a good husband to his and a good father to their son. Here are more details about the actor's family, especially his son, who is his carbon copy.

Details of the Couple’s Son’s Childhood

The famous star and his wife, Dana, welcomed their first child and son on June 7, 1992, in Williamstown, Massachusetts. While growing up, the boy enjoyed a normal childhood, despite having a famous father.

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During an interview, the couple's son explained that as a child, his parents were normal and did things ordinary parents would do. "They were the people who told me to turn off the TV, to eat my broccoli, to go to bed," he explained.

The happy couple and their son at "SuperSkate 2001" on January 7, 2001, at Madison Square Garden in New York City | Source: Getty Images

The happy couple and their son at "SuperSkate 2001" on January 7, 2001, at Madison Square Garden in New York City | Source: Getty Images

According to him, his parents stayed true to their values, which helped him to never feel deprived of a normal childhood. More interestingly, his father's disability did not hinder him from carrying out his parental duties that included spending time with his son.

The late actor's son speaks during the 18th Annual "A Magical Evening Gala" hosted by the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation on November 10, 2008, in New York City | Source: Getty Images

The late actor's son speaks during the 18th Annual "A Magical Evening Gala" hosted by the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation on November 10, 2008, in New York City | Source: Getty Images

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For example, the actor's son once recalled how his dad coached him on riding a bike. Initially, the boy was terrified and did not believe it would work, as his father was in a wheelchair. However, once he started riding the bike, the parent began coaching and encouraging him.

Christopher Reeve at the Premiere Party for "Fellow Traveler" in New York | Source: Getty Images

Christopher Reeve at the Premiere Party for "Fellow Traveler" in New York | Source: Getty Images

"Steady, steady, left, right, left, right," were the actor's words to his son. By the third lap, the boy's fear had turned to joy, and he was smiling, waving at his dad. When the activist's son became a professional at riding a bike, he would race his father in his wheelchair.

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Christopher would let his son win and overall, the father and child had a beautiful bond. However, the pair didn't have the rest of their lives to get closer as tragedy struck in the coming years.

Christopher and Dana’s Demise

Sadly, the sweet relationship Will shared with his father ended following the actor's death. After living as a person with quadriplegia for nine years, Christopher passed away on October 10, 2004, due to complications from an infection caused by a bedsore. He was 52 years old.

Christopher Reeve, his wife Dana and son Will arrive at the screening of "House of D" during the Tribeca Film Festival on May 7, 2004, in New York City | Source: Getty Images

Christopher Reeve, his wife Dana and son Will arrive at the screening of "House of D" during the Tribeca Film Festival on May 7, 2004, in New York City | Source: Getty Images

Almost a year later, in August 2005, Will faced another tragedy when his mother was diagnosed with lung cancer, despite being a non-smoker. She battled the disease for a few months before losing it in March 2006, at 44.

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The late actor's son at the Memorial for his mother on April 10, 2006 | Source: Getty Images

The late actor's son at the Memorial for his mother on April 10, 2006 | Source: Getty Images

Dana's death meant that Will, only 13 years old, had become an orphan. However, before his mother died, she made arrangements to secure her son's future. Instead of living with relatives, Dana arranged that her son would live with family friends in Bedford, New York.

Christopher Reeve at the 13th Annual "A Magical Evening" Gala Hosted by The Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation in New York | Source: Getty Images

Christopher Reeve at the 13th Annual "A Magical Evening" Gala Hosted by The Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation in New York | Source: Getty Images

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Sources revealed that Christopher's wife made the arrangements because her son already shared a close bond with the family friend's son. In addition, she wanted Will to continue living happily with the friends he had already made.

Where Is Will Now?

It's been almost two decades since Christopher and Dana died, and Will is doing well, with many achievements. In 2010, he graduated from Brunswick School, and four years later, he obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and American Literatures from Middlebury College.

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Apart from his educational achievements, Will has also tried his hand at other things, including acting. His movie credits are "In the Gloaming," "Everyone's Hero," and "The Brooke Ellison Story."

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In 2024, Dana's son also honored his late father by making a cameo in a "Superman" movie. According to reports and pictures on X, Will was seen shaking hands and hugging the movie franchise's James Gunn who is the CEO of DC Studios.

The pair were photographed on the "Superman" set in Cleveland, Ohio. At age 52, and 20 years after Christopher's death, Gunn is working on the new DC Cinematic Universe film that is set to be released in July 2025. Will's IMDb account has already credited him for "Superman" 2025.

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Furthermore, the late star's son tried his hand at broadcasting, fell in love with it, and excelled. He has garnered much broadcasting experience, working as the host of "The MSG Hockey Show," a correspondent for ABC News, and a commentator for ESPN.

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Regarding his work as a commentator for ESPN, Will revealed that it was his dream job. The company spotted him during his internships at ABC and "Good Morning America." Following his graduation from Middlebury College, the company assigned him writing and reporting gigs.

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In no time, he had become a member of the ESPN family. For Will, it was a dream come true, as he had always shared a love for sports with his late father. In his words, "My dad and I had a huge bond and shared a love of sports."

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Dana's son continued, "I hope they would be proud and say, 'Great job,' no matter what." Apart from sharing a love for sports, Will and his father also shared an uncanny resemblance. On what would have been Christopher's 65th birthday in 2017, Will took to Instagram to celebrate his father's memory.

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He shared a throwback picture of himself as a baby, posing next to his young father, and the striking resemblance between parent and child was obvious. Also, in some Instagram posts shared in recent years, grown-up pictures of Will prove that he is the spitting image of young Christopher, with fans confirming it.

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In November 2021, the broadcaster shared a montage of images after freshly concluding the TCS New York City marathon. Not long after, netizens took to the comments section to note how similar Will was to his late dad.

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"You look so much like your dad," another respondent noted. "You look like your father. Strong, handsome, and inspiring. He would be proud," a user wrote. Besides working in a field that him and his father enjoyed, Will is also keeping his parents' memories alive.

Will Carries on His Parents’ Legacy

Since Christopher and Dana passed away, Will has been focused on preserving their legacy. Currently, he is a member of the board of directors on his mother and father's foundation, known as The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation.

Will Reeve at The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation's "Magical Evening" Gala on November 15, 2018, in New York City | Source: Getty Images

Will Reeve at The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation's "Magical Evening" Gala on November 15, 2018, in New York City | Source: Getty Images

The foundation began in 1999 after Christopher's organization joined forces with the American Paralysis Association (APA), formerly Stifel Paralysis Research Foundation. Dana's name was only added to the foundation's moniker after her demise.

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The foundation aims at finding a cure for spinal cord injuries and providing care for patients who are affected by paralysis.

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To date, the foundation remains an integral part of Will's life, and he works hard to help it thrive. For instance, in 2017, he participated in the TCS New York City Marathon to raise money for the foundation.

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His quest was successful, as well-meaning individuals donated $64,839.52 of his $52,000 goal. Overall, Will hopes to make his parents proud of his actions. He once confessed, "I hope I make my parents proud. I try to do that every day and like to think they would be."

Indeed, Christopher Reeve and Dana will be proud of the 32 year old as he has done a great job continuing their legacy.

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