Valerie Bertinelli has opened up about the final moments she spent with her ex-husband Eddie Van Halen.
The Van Halen guitarist died from throat cancer on October 6, 2020. He was 65 years old.
US actor Bertinelli was married to Van Halen for 20 years until they divorced in 2007. Writing in her new memoir, Enough Already: Learning to Love the Way I Am Today, she looked back on her relationship with her “soulmate” (via People).
Bertinelli and the late musician’s son, Wolfgang, spent every day together in the hospital during the guitarist’s final weeks alongside his second wife, Janie Liszewski, and his brother, Alex Van Halen.
“‘I love you’ are the last words Ed says to Wolfie and me,” Bertinelli wrote in Enough Already…, “and they are the last words we say to him before he stops breathing.”
Elsewhere in the book, she wrote: “I can’t explain the feelings Ed and I had for each other. Who really knows had he not died. I doubt it. I loved him more than I know how to explain and there’s nothing sexual about it. It was more than that. And Ed and I understood that.
“There is no greater love than what we had between the two of us and with that, we made this beautiful son.”
Bertinelli described her lengthy relationship with Van Halen as a combination of “love, anger, frustration and friendship”, saying that they were “portrayed as a mismatch” couple in their early years.
“The bad boy rock star and America’s sweetheart but privately, Ed wasn’t the person people thought he was and neither was I,” she said.
Speaking of Van Halen’s issues with addiction, Bertinelli wrote: “I hated the drugs and the alcohol but I never hated him. I saw his pain.”
Back in October, Wolfgang Van Halen paid tribute to his father to mark the first anniversary of his death. He said he was “trying to my best here without [Eddie], but it’s really fucking hard”.
“You fought so hard for so long, but you were still taken away,” Wolfgang added, “It’s just so unfair.”
A memorial plaque to Eddie Van Halen was unveiled in his hometown of Pasadena, California later that month.