Jett Travolta's body shows no sign of head trauma and his death certificate says he was killed by a "seizure," an undertaker said Monday, as the 16-year-old's celebrity parents prepared for a Florida funeral.
Glen Campbell, assistant director of the Bahamian funeral home handling the remains of John Travolta's son, told The Associated Press that the body is in "great condition," despite police officials who had said the teen hit his head on a bathtub.
Authorities didn't release the results of an autopsy performed Monday, but Campbell saw the body and the death certificate, which was based on its findings.
"The only cause of death that was listed was 'seizure,'" he said.
Late Monday, a black hearse traveled from the funeral home to the airport after the family said it would bury the teen near their home in Ocala, Florida. Two white jets waited as police in dress uniforms blocked access to the tarmac.
Jett Travolta died Friday at the family's vacation home on Grand Bahama Island.
"We are heartbroken that our time with him was so brief," actor parents John Travolta and Kelly Preston said Sunday in a public statement. "We will cherish the time we had with him for the rest of our lives."
Travolta tried CPR to revive his son, who may have died in his arms before an emergency medical technician took over, Usmagazine.com reported, citing Travolta attorneys Michael McDermott and Michael Ossi. They did not respond to calls from the AP on Monday.
Travolta, 54, and Preston, 46, have said Jett became very sick when he was 2 years old and was diagnosed with Kawasaki Syndrome, an illness that leads to inflamed blood vessels. Preston has blamed household cleaners and fertilizers and said a detoxification program based on teachings from the Church of Scientology helped improve his health, according to People magazine.
Police said in a statement that Jett had not been seen since Thursday when a caretaker, Jeff Kathrain, found him unconscious late Friday morning. But McDermott said that wrongly left the impression that Jett was unsupervised. He said two nannies were with Jett throughout the evening, and he does not believe the teen was in the bathroom for very long.
About a dozen security guards and Bahamian police officers patrolled around the luxury Old Bahama Bay resort community Sunday where the Travoltas have their home. The white-sand beach in front of the suites was closed.
The couple also has an 8-year-old daughter, Ella Bleu.
Bahamian Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham sent condolences to the Travolta family and said the autopsy is a formality the country requires in cases of sudden death to rule out foul play.
Back in 2000, John Travolta spoke on The Early Show about Jett after the birth of his second child.
"The first one, they're monitored so closely. The poor things, how do they survive it?"
But starting when he was just two, something was also wrong with Jett. His parents said it was Kawasaki Syndrome, a rare lymph node disorder found in young children.
They have denied reports linking his history of seizures to autism, a condition their faith does not recognize … as among Hollywood's best-known Scientologists.
"I attribute everything in my career to Scientology," Preston said in 1997.
Autopsies cannot pinpoint autism, but today's may somehow explain his final fatal fall in the Bahamas.
By mid-week, the Travoltas hope to bring their son's body to central Florida for burial. This island holds a special place for the Travoltas. Wherever you go, the locals talk about them - and now grieve for them - like extended family.
A Close-Knit Family Fractured By Loss
Entertainment reporter Mark Steines, co-host of "Entertainment Tonight," said Travolta has spoken recently with him of looking forward to a holiday trip with his family, following the lengthy shooting schedule of "From Paris With Love."
"He said it was exhausting," Steines told The Early Show correspondent Julie Chen. "He was looking to the wrap date, which was the 19th, 20th of December and very much looking forward to time over the holidays with his family, coming here and ringing in the New Year. Of course, we know it wasn't much of a celebration."
Steines said he met Jett years ago when he was much smaller. "It is a family affair with the Travoltas. They spend as much time together as possible. There's a film coming out called "Old Dogs" that stars John, Kelly and Ella Bleu."
Steines said the family is "locked down" in their gated community on the west side of the island, surrounded by loved ones. "About 16 family and friends had come in to ring in the New Year with the Travoltas. This is what they typically do this time of year, a big gathering of friends and family here. Some of those people remain here in the Travoltas in support, and there may be possibly a small viewing as well."
The couple met in the late eighties while filming "The Experts." They married in 1991.
Steines described the Travoltas as "wonderful" parents. "They're always trying to find ways to work together. John frequently has them stay with him when he's on location. In this case when he was in Paris recently, they had a little chateau, villa that they all stayed together in. You know, he's a family guy. He loves his children very, very much.
"Kelly is very active in their lives from education to raising awareness about chemicals in homes and things like that and lobbying for, you know, not use of medication to deal with certain issues with children in schools such as ritalin and things like that. I've had long discussions with her about that. So they are very, very caring parents."
Steines said the close-knit family is now fractured by the loss of Jett.
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