The John Wick actor was left devasted after losing his best friend, his girlfriend, and his baby girl early on in his life.
Actor Keanu Reeves has made quite a reputation of being the nicest person in Hollywood through his random acts of kindness. Be it arranging for a vehicle for his stranded fellow airplane passengers, giving up a portion of his salary to his crew members, or being super friendly to his fans without ever crossing the line, there are countless reasons to love the Matrix star. His approachable and sweet nature may fool some into thinking that he's had it all but in reality, the 56-year-old has experienced a life filled with heartbreak, pain, and insurmountable sorrow.
Keanu Reeves and River Phoenix, 1991.— sujey (@cobainfilms) August 30, 2020
I tried to colorize these photos. pic.twitter.com/p5BwIllQb8
The John Wick actor was left devasted after losing his best friend, his girlfriend, and his baby girl early on in his life. In 1993, his best friend River Phoenix, Joaquin Phoenix's brother, passed away at 23 following a drug overdose, according to a report by PEOPLE. Five years following this terrible loss, he met Jennifer Syme in 1998 and they began dating. Over a year into their blissful relationship, the actor was hit by another tragedy—Syme had given birth to a stillborn daughter during the Christmas eve of 1999, reports Fabiosa.
Shortly after organizing a funeral for their baby girl, the pair began drifting apart. Unfortunately, their loving relationship ended in a breakup but that didn't stop the two from maintaining a good friendship. But two years later, Syme passed away in a car crash, leaving the Reeves shattered once again. With every gut-wrenching tragedy, Reeves' life was molded in such a way that he became a person with a boundless capacity for kindness and an unparalleled work ethic, but he was still someone who never seems to laugh or smile wholeheartedly.
Speaking about grief to US magazine Parade, he said, "Grief changes shape, but it never ends. People have a misconception that you can deal with it and say, 'It's gone, and I'm better.' They're wrong." According to Daily Mail, he continued, "When the people you love are gone, you're alone. I miss being a part of their lives and them being part of mine. I wonder what the present would be like if they were here - what we might have done together. I miss all the great things that will never be. Damn it! It's not fair! It's absurd. All you can do is hope that grief will be transformed and, instead of feeling pain and confusion you will be together again in memory, that there will be solace and pleasure there, not just loss."
During his interview on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, Reeves was asked, "What do you think happens when we die, Keanu Reeves?" The actor's straightforward reply left the host and the audience dumbfounded with his profound response. "I know that the ones who love us will miss us," he said, leaving everyone at a loss for words, especially considering the tragic past Reeves had overcome. Despite living through such unimaginable situations, Reeves was not one to give up. The actor shared how he was at a "turning point" at that time. "I don't want to flee from life," he said of his resolve. "I know the beauty of it."
When asked if his sense of loss changed the person he is today, Reeves said, "I'm trying not to be alone so much. And, man, it's a struggle. I want to get married. I want to have kids. That's at the top of the mountain. I've got to climb the mountain first. I'll do it. Just give me some time." The way he gradually recovered from the tragedies was truly remarkable and he did come back stronger than ever. He found love once again in his life and in things he does. It is reported that the actor is dating 47-year-old visual artist Alexandra Grant after they walked down the red carpet at LACMA Art + Film Gala, Los Angeles in 2019.