When the actor was just 13 years old, his father was killed during a home invasion. A few years later, his younger sister, Karen, was horrifically raped and murdered. Then, his two half-brothers, Stephen and Billy, both perished while scuba-diving in the Virgin Islands.
“I just put [that pain] where it is: in the past. But it’s a pain that you can always stumble into again – it’s with you 24/7, especially in the case of tragic death, and there have been a few of those,” Kelsey, 62, recently told the UK’s i News.
“It’s just part of life. Maybe I learned a little earlier than most, but it’s just the way it goes,” he continued.
Kelsey’s late sister, Karen. (Photo Credit: Splash
After three failed marriages, Kelsey tied the knot with his fourth wife, Kayte Walsh, in 2011. While later trying to start a family together, Kayte sadly suffered several miscarriages.
“Kayte and I had a couple of miscarriages before we had our first child. That was devastating,” the former Cheers star — who is now a father to Faith, 5, Kelsey Jr., 2, and Auden, 8 months, with Kayte — said.
“These things are hard. But when [life is] good, it’s magnificent,” he added.
Kelsey with his wife, Kayte. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)
This isn’t the first time Kelsey has candidly opened up about his sister Karen’s death. “She was my best friend and the best person I knew… I loved my sister, Karen. I miss her. I miss her in my bones. I was her big brother. I was supposed to protect her — I could not. I have never gotten over it… It very nearly destroyed me,” he wrote in a letter when his sister’s murderer was up for parole in 2009.
“Every one of us is going to experience some terrible loss. I just got a big dose,” he told Vanity Fair. “For every story you hear that’s tragic, there’s another that’s equally tragic or more so. I think you come to look at it as part of life.”