Somewhere in Heaven: The Remarkable Love Story of Dana and Christopher Reeve

BOOK: Somewhere in Heaven: The Remarkable Love Story of Dana and Christopher Reeve
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SOMEWHERE

IN HEAVEN

The Remarkable Love Story of Dana and Christopher Reeve

-

Christopher Andersen

For those who never give up

“Real love, and the ability to love somebody as damaged as I was,
that is a very rare and precious thing.”

—Chris

“It was easy to fall in love with him. He is extraordinary.”

—Dana

“There are not that many times when you come across that true, shining love that Chris and Dana had for each other.”

—Barbara Walters

Contents

Epigraph

Preface 1

iii vii

She was one of the bravest women Mimi Lieber had…

3

2

He simply could not take his eyes off her. Wearing…

13

3

It had been an idyllic few months in L.A. during…

53

4

An unseasonably late snowstorm had swept through the Northeast the…

85

5

Dana leaned over to wipe the spaghetti sauce off Will’s…

115

6

Chris gazes across the sun-filled living room at Dana, who…

157

7

The pond Chris loved to gaze at for hours glistened…

201

Acknowledgments

Source Notes

Selected Bibliography

Index

About the Author

Other Books by Christopher Andersen

Credits

Cover

Copyright

CHRIS
: Yes, we are lovers, and

I hope we always will be. I will always be in love with Dana.

DA NA
: And I will always be in love with Chris.

PR E FAC E

-

B

y any definition, they were a golden couple—young, talented, famous, rich, impossibly beautiful, disarmingly charming,

and improbably down to earth. He had rocketed to interna- tional fame at age twenty-six wearing the red-and-yellow cape of America’s greatest superhero. She was the aspiring singer- actress with the disarmingly self-deprecating wit who—at five feet seven inches to his six feet four inches—was nevertheless by any measure his equal.

The evidence of this perfect life they shared seemed to be everywhere. At glittering premieres and charity events, they al- ways paused on the red carpet to smile politely for the cameras. They were socially conscious, politically engaged, and crusaded for the causes they believed in. Away from the spotlight, they were simply besotted with the young son they had together, and lavished no less affection on his two children from a previous

v i i i P R E F A C E

relationship. They traveled among several homes in the private plane he piloted, and sailed the Northeastern coastline of the United States in their custom-built yacht. In public and in pri- vate, they embraced often and laughed even more. Clearly, they had every reason to.

Then it happened. In a horrifying instant, Christopher Reeve— the quintessential man of action both on and off screen—was at age forty-two rendered a wheelchair-bound quadriplegic, com- pletely paralyzed from the shoulders down, unable even to breathe on his own. To the world, the life Chris and Dana had shared seemed irretrievably broken—shattered beyond all repair.

They were wrong. Over the next nine years, Chris, with Dana steadfastly at his side, would battle back to become both a leader in the fight to cure spinal cord injuries and a symbol of hope for millions. By the time he died suddenly and unexpectedly from an infection on October 10, 2004, Reeve was soaring higher as a humanitarian than he ever had on screen.

Chris’s suffering was over, but not Dana’s. Just four months later, Dana’s beloved mother died unexpectedly after being op- erated on for ovarian cancer. Then Dana would wage her own war for survival with the same dignity, courage, and humor that were the hallmarks of her life with Chris. But she would face her own crisis bearing a burden that Chris never had to: the knowledge that Will, who had scarcely gotten over the passing of his dad and his grandmother, could soon be left an orphan.

The miracle Chris and Dana set out to achieve—the medical breakthrough that would have enabled him to walk again—has yet

P R E F A C E i x

to happen. Yet what they
were
as a couple, before and after the accident that changed their lives forever, was nothing short of miraculous. Theirs was a saga of fate, faith, grace, and grit—a tale of triumph and tragedy, as inspiring as it was heartbreaking. Yet it was one thing above all others: a love story.

BOOK: Somewhere in Heaven: The Remarkable Love Story of Dana and Christopher Reeve
8.49Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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