Paulina Porizkova speaks out on late husband Ric Ocasek's death: 'Completely and utterly devastated'

Erin Donnelly

Paulina Porizkova is breaking her silence following news that her estranged husband, rocker Ric Ocasek of the Cars, has died. Ocasek was 75.

According to a statement posted on Instagram, it was Porizkova who discovered that Ocasek, who had been “recuperating very well” after an undisclosed surgery, had “peacefully passed on” between Saturday night and Sunday morning. She added that their family is “completely and utterly devastated by his untimely and unexpected death.”

She also shared a message from their two sons, who found Ocasek’s “last doodle,” on which he’d written, “Never forget that look” and “Keep on laughin’ it is what it is.”

As tributes to the singer have flooded in on social media from the likes of Sarah Jessica Parker, Billy Idol, Bette Midler and Kurt Loder, some grieving fans have gone a step further and left flowers, candles and — in a nod to Ocasek’s band — toy cars outside what appears to be his home.

NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 09:  Paulina Porizkova and Ric Ocasek attend the 'Florence Foster Jenkins' New York premiere at AMC Loews Lincoln Square 13 theater on August 9, 2016 in New York City.  (Photo by Gilbert Carrasquillo/FilmMagic)
Paulina Porizkova thanked fans for their tributes to husband Ric Ocasek (pictured in 2016) following his death. (Photo: Gilbert Carrasquillo/FilmMagic)

Porizkova, who announced her amicable separation from Ocasek in 2018, shared a photo of the makeshift memorial on Instagram, writing, simply, “Thank you.”

Porizkova was 18 when she starred alongside Ocasek in the 1984 music video for “Drive,” directed by actor Timothy Hutton.

After meeting on the set, the Czech-born model began dating Ocasek, eventually marrying him in 1989. They welcomed sons Jonathan and Oliver in 1993 and 1999, respectively.

Ric Ocasek and Paulina Porzikova (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)
Ocasek and Porzikova were married in 1989. (Photo: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)

In May 2018, shortly after she helped Ocasek celebrate the Cars’ induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, she announced that they had been “peacefully separated for the past year,” describing them as a “happy family” but “no longer a couple.”

Fans have sent the 54-year-old Porizkova prayers and messages of condolences.

This story was originally published on Sept. 16 at 12:20 p.m. ET and has been updated to include Porizkova’s full statement about Ocasek’s death.

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