Kelly Preston (born Kelly Kamalelehua Smith) began her modeling career at the age of 16, per The Sun, but quickly transitioned to acting. According to Reuters, the Hawaii native “changed her name to Kelly Preston before securing her first film role in the 1985 rom-com Mischief.”
The Holy Man star had a successful career well into the late ’90s, appearing in 1996’s Jerry Maguire alongside Tom Cruise and 1998’s Jack Frost. Preston even popped up in the Maroon 5 music video for the classic “She Will Be Loved.” Preston was a well-respected actress in Hollywood, which is why the entertainment industry was left reeling following the news of her untimely death.
On July 13, 2020, her husband of 29 years, John Travolta, took to Instagram to post a photo of Preston with the caption: “It is with a very heavy heart that I inform you that my beautiful wife Kelly has lost her two-year battle with breast cancer.” Travolta shares two children with Preston — Benjamin and Ella Bleu. Their son Jett died from a seizure in January 2009, per People. In his social media post, Travolta added that he would “be taking some time to be there for [his] children who have lost their mother …”
Prior to her death, Preston was a devout Scientologist. Travolta is also a member of the Church of Scientology. In fact, according to People, the couple even had a Scientologist minister preside over their marriage ceremony in 1991. Let’s take a closer took at Preston’s relationship with the controversial faith.
Scientology helped Kelly Preston and John Travolta heal after their son's death
Over the years, Kelly Preston and John Travolta weren’t super vocal regarding their involvement within the Church of Scientology. However, the couple was very vocal about their healing process following the death of their son, Jett Travolta, in 2009. In an interview with talk show host Amanda de Cadenet on The Conversation with Amanda de Cadenet in 2012 (via Radar Online), Preston said that the church and congregation helped her learn how to deal with the pain.
“In Scientology, we have what’s called ‘auditing,’ and that helps you to address things in your life and to strip them away,” she said. “It’s a path of spiritual enlightenment. Also, it helps rid the mind of painful experience completely. Through that, the people at my church literally held my hand and got me through … I will forever be indebted.”
While, as of this writing, there hasn’t been an official announcement, according to the Mirror, as Preston and Travolta “were prominent members of The Church of Scientology … she’s likely to be given a funeral service in accordance with its customs.” Per the outlet, the Church of Scientology’s funeral services are “a reaffirmation of the knowledge that we are immortal spiritual beings.”
Our thoughts are with Preston’s loved ones during this difficult time.
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