Liam Neeson Opens Up About Vanessa Redgrave’s Vital Role as a Support System for His Sons Following Tragic Loss of Wife

Liam Neeson Reflects on the Support of Vanessa Redgrave, His Mother-in-Law, in the Wake of His Wife’s Tragic Passing

Renowned Irish actor Liam Neeson has garnered fame and success in Hollywood, starring in notable films like “Schindler’s List” and the action-packed franchise “Taken.” Throughout his career, he has received numerous award nominations, including an Academy Award, a British Academy Film Award, two Tony Awards, and three Golden Globe Awards. In 2020, he was honored as the seventh greatest film actor in Ireland according to The Irish Times.

However, amidst his triumphs, Liam Neeson has faced personal hardships and struggles. The most profound of these challenges has been the loss of his beloved wife, Natasha Richardson.

Liam and Natasha, both prominent actors, first crossed paths in 1993 during their roles in the Broadway play “Anna Christie.” At that time, Natasha was still married to producer Robert Fox, although their marriage was undergoing a divorce. Their connection deepened, and they began dating later that year, eventually marrying in 1994. Together, they shared the joy of raising two sons, Micheál Richardson and Daniel Neeson. For 16 years, they enjoyed a blissful family life until tragedy struck in 2009. While skiing with one of her sons, Natasha suffered a head injury from a fall, which led to a severe brain injury and her untimely passing.

Liam Neeson has since opened up about the profound impact of his wife’s loss on himself and his sons, as well as the significant role played by his mother-in-law, Vanessa Redgrave, a legendary actress in her own right, in supporting the family during this challenging time. In March 2009, Natasha was on a skiing trip with their eldest son in Quebec, Canada when the accident occurred. Initially declining medical assistance after the fall, unaware of the severity of her injury, Natasha continued her day.

However, three hours later, she was rushed to the hospital. Liam, who was in Toronto at the time, immediately flew to her side. Upon arrival, he discovered that she was on life support. Though uncertain if she could hear him, he expressed his love to her. Liam also shared a pact he and Natasha had made, agreeing that if either of them were in a comatose state, they would “pull the plug.” Recalling those critical moments, he shared with CBS:

“So when I saw her and saw all these tubes and stuff, that was my immediate thought. Was, ‘OK, these tubes have to go. She’s gone.’”

In the wake of his wife’s passing, Liam has openly expressed the immense void he feels without her. He still sometimes expects Natasha to walk through the door of their home as if nothing had happened, struggling with the reality of her absence.

Liam faced the arduous task of being a pillar of strength for his two sons, who were only 12 and 13 years old when their mother passed away. In a 2014 interview with CBS, Liam shared the caring and nurturing nature that Natasha embodied. He spoke fondly of her motherly instincts, describing her dedication to cooking meals for everyone and taking care of their family.

It is likely that Natasha inherited her motherly qualities from her own mother, Vanessa Redgrave, who stepped in to support Liam and raise her grandsons following her daughter’s tragic passing. On the day of Liam and Natasha’s wedding, it was Redgrave who walked her daughter down the aisle since Natasha’s father had already passed away. During Natasha’s funeral, Liam and Redgrave comforted each other, with Liam serving as a pallbearer. In an interview with the Independent, Liam credited Redgrave’s unwavering support as one of the reasons he was able to continue with his career, stating:

“I have a great support system, and if I’m away on a project, my mother-in-law moves in.”

Redgrave’s presence provided immense solace during their shared grief that persisted long after Natasha’s passing. Reflecting on the healing process, Redgrave shared with People in 2019:

“Time does not heal; that would seem to me to say that suddenly it’s okay, and it’s not. It never becomes OK.”

Actress Joely Richardson, Natasha’s sister, echoed similar sentiments in the same interview, emphasizing that the family unit had undergone a profound transformation:

“You are different. You aren’t stronger or weaker. Just different – changed. What we have done well as a family is that in honoring and supporting one another, we reformed to become a strong, loving unit.”

In honor of her mother’s 86th birthday on January 30, 2023, Joely shared a heartfelt social media post, featuring photos of Redgrave smiling outdoors with her dogs and several throwback pictures.

Furthermore, on January 24, 2023, Joely posted auction photos of her sister to raise funds for a women’s charity. In the caption, she wrote:

“Tasha said she felt safe in her husband’s arms… T’s last professional portrait – never more beautiful, and in fact, as serene and peaceful as an Angel.”






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