Kelly Preston’s heartbroken brother has said she will ‘always be remembered for how she brought out the best in people’.
The Jerry Maguire actress’ loved ones were by her bedside alongside husband John Travolta as she passed away from breast cancer at age 57 on Sunday in Florida.
Her younger half-brother Chris Palzis, 51, said the family had been left ‘gutted’ by her death.
The LA-based realtor told DailyMail.com: ‘We’re still really grieving so I don’t have anything eloquent to say right now.’
‘We’re just all very gutted over this, if I had to say something that would pretty much summarize it,’ Chris said.
‘She was a light and she was a warrior and she’ll always be remembered for how she brought out the best in people.
‘It’s heartbreaking. We just got back from her bedside in Florida. We were all together in Florida,’ he added.
Chris was born after Kelly’s mother remarried with Peter Palzis after Kelly’s own father died when she was just three.
The siblings were pictured together at events such as the Skyla boutique opening in Westwood in July 2005.
John Travolta’s former handler in the Church or Scientology also paid tribute to Kelly, who she met in the late 1980s.
Spanky Taylor, who worked alongside Travolta during his early career before she left the church and lost contact with him, said she was ‘heartbroken’ for him.
The 67-year-old told DailyMail.com: ‘Kelly was a very kind woman, she was lovely. She was engaged to Charlie Sheen at that time, I don’t think that she had met John yet.’
‘Kelly was just lovely. She was extraordinarily beautiful and she seemed as lovely on the inside as she was on the outside.
‘She was bright and bubbly and she was very kind,’ Taylor said. ‘It’s heartbreaking, especially because John is so good.
‘He’s such a good person and I hate seeing anyone going through that kind of suffering, let alone someone who I care about.’
Travolta, 66, revealed on Sunday that his wife had been fighting breast cancer for two years.Advertisement
A spokesman for the Travolta family told People that Kelly had chosen to ‘keep her fight private [and] had been undergoing medical treatment for some time, supported by her closest family and friends,’ in the months prior to her death.
‘She was a bright, beautiful and loving soul who cared deeply about others and who brought life to everything she touched. Her family asks for your understanding of their need for privacy at this time,’ the spokesperson continued.
Travolta also paid tribute to the ‘doctors and nurses at MD Anderson Cancer Center’ who treated Preston during her illness, but the family has not revealed whether she was in the hospital or at the couple’s Florida home when she died.
The Anderson Cancer Center has numerous locations in the United States, including in Florida.
The two actors’ lives had already been overshadowed by tragedy when their 16-year-old son Jett died after a seizure at a Bahamas holiday home in 2009.
The shock of Jett’s death was followed by a legal row with an ambulance driver and lawyer who were accused of trying to extort $25million from the couple by threatening to reveal sensitive details about the death.