John Travolta and son Jett in 2005
Splash News Online
01/02/2009 at 07:15 PM EST
Jett Travolta, the 16-year-old son of actor John Travolta and wife Kelly Preston, died Friday while on vacation with his family in the Bahamas.
Jett had suffered a seizure at his family's vacation home at the Old Bahama Bay Hotel on Grand Bahama Island, said Michael Ossi, a lawyer for the family, in a statement through Travolta's rep.
The teen hit his head in a bathtub Friday morning and was declared dead at Rand Memorial Hospital, police spokeswoman Loretta Mackey told the Associated Press.
According to police, a caretaker had found Jett unconscious in the bathroom around 10 a.m. An autopsy is being pursued to determine the exact cause of death.
Jett, who is the only son of Travolta, 54, and Preston, 46, had a history of seizures, according to Ossi. The couple also have a daughter, Ella Bleu, 8.
The death was first reported by TMZ
In 2003 Preston told Montel Williams that when Jett was 2 he became "very, very ill, but it seemed like flu symptoms" before being diagnosed with Kawasaki disease. The condition, which usually affects children from ages 2 to 5, can cause inflammation of the arteries. Usually treatable, it can lead to lasting heart damage in rare cases.
Preston, who also said Jett suffered from asthma, blamed household cleaners, fertilizers and pesticides for sparking the condition and lobbied for more detailed labeling on chemical products. She credited a detoxification program based on the writings of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard with helping to improve Jett's health.
In November Jett joined his dad in Paris, where Travolta has been shooting From Paris with Love.
In 1994 the actor told PEOPLE how much he loved fatherhood. "I can't imagine what life would be like without Jett," he said. "After he was born and cleaned up, I held him for hours while Kelly slept. When they came to take him away for various tests, I said, 'No, you can't see him today. You'll have to do it another day.' I went a little nutsy."
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1994: John says 'I can't imagine what life would be like without Jett'