Hayden Panettiere's Family Reveals Jansen Panettiere's Cause of Death
Jansen Panettiere's family is honoring the late actor after his sudden death.
One week after the artist and younger brother of Hayden Panettiere passed away in New York at the age of 28, his loved ones paid tribute to him in a moving message.
"Jansen's heart could be seen in his eyes, and his charm in his brilliant, engaging smile; his soul in his masterful and revealing paintings, and the joy of life in his dry wit," Hayden—along with mom Lesley Vogel and dad Skip Panettiere—said in a Feb. 27 statement to E! News. "His charisma, warmth, compassion for others, and his creative spirit will live forever in our hearts and in the hearts of all whom he encountered."
Jansen's family also shared details about his cause of death. "Though it offers little solace," they noted, "the Medical Examiner reported Jansen's sudden passing was due to cardiomegaly (enlarged heart), coupled with aortic valve complications."
"We sincerely appreciate the outpouring of love and support towards our family as we navigate this unthinkable loss, and ask that we be gifted our privacy during this time of mourning," the family concluded. "We love you so much Jansen and you will be in our hearts forever."
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A rep for Jansen confirmed his passing to Deadline on Feb. 20, while law enforcement sources told TMZ they received a call to a residence on the evening of Feb. 19.
It was just weeks ago, on Jan. 24, that Jansen shared a sweet Instagram photo with his sister Hayden. Alongside a snap of the Scream VI actress appearing to chop off his locks, Jansen wrote, "Not the first haircut she's tried to give me."
The siblings documented their strong bond over the years, even taking a trip together in Sept. 2021. "Sibling time at the amaaaaazing market in #Tahiti," Hayden captioned an Instagram selfie of the duo. "#OceanDiaries @jrpanettiere."
And back in 2007, Hayden and Jansen even interviewed each other for TV Guide.
"He is a very balanced child. He has a heart of gold and would never wish bad on anyone," Hayden told the outlet at the time. "Sometimes I need to take a lesson from him."
Though Jansen previously appeared in Disney's Even Stevens, filmed the made-for-TV movie Tiger Cruise and had guest roles on shows like Everybody Hates Chris and The Walking Dead, in recent years, he seemed to be focused on his art.
On Feb. 17, two days before his death, Jansen shared his last Instagram post, a picture that appeared to be his girlfriend Catherine Michie posing next to a colorful painting.
Catherine later honored Jansen in a Feb. 19 message on her Instagram page, reflecting on their time together. "Jansen, I met you only a year ago, but you have been my best friend and biggest fan," she wrote. "I will never forget the first time I saw your face and the first things you said to me. Words cannot express the pain of knowing I won't hear your laugh again."
"I hope you find peace, and I'm sorry I wasn't there when you needed me most," she continued. "The world is better because you were in it. I know we will paint together again someday. I'll always be your sugarpop. Someone wake me up and tell me this is a dream."