Natasha Richardson’s death still haunts Liam Neeson

LONDON - OCTOBER 17: Liam Neeson and Natasha Richardson arrive at the BFI 52 London Film Festival: 'The Other Man' Premiere at the Odeon West End on October 17, 2008 in London, England.  (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
Liam Neeson and Natasha Richardson arrive at the BFI 52 London Film Festival at the Odeon West End on Oct. 17, 2008. Credit: Chris Jackson/Getty Images

It’s been five years since actress Natasha Richardson died in a skiiing accident. Her widower, Liam Neeson, still struggles sometimes to believe she’s gone.

“[Her death] was never real. It still kind of isn’t,” Neeson told Anderson Cooper on “60 Minutes.” ”There’s periods now in our New York residence when I hear the door opening, especially the first couple of years… anytime I hear that door opening, I still think I’m going to hear her.”

Neeson said that he and Richardson, who were married for 15 years and had two sons, had an agreement not to let each other linger on life support — exactly the nightmare scenario that Neeson faced after Richardson injured her head during a beginner’s ski lesson. ”She was on life support. … I went in to her and I told her I loved her, said, ‘Sweetie, you’re not coming back from this, you’ve banged your head.’ … She and I had made a pact, if any of us got into a vegetative state that we’d pull the plug… that was my immediate thought… ‘OK, these tubes have to go. She’s gone.’”

Neeson, who stars in the upcoming thriller “Non-Stop,” says that one source of comfort is the knowledge that Richardson’s passing saved other lives: Her heart, liver, and kidneys were all donated.


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