Rosanna Arquette Says Her Family Are 'in PTSD' Over Sister Alexis' Death at 47
Rosanna Arquette opens up about her the death of her sister Alexis, saying her family is all in PTSD.
On Thursday’s Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen, a caller asked Rosanna what her favorite memory was with her beloved sister.
“Well, every birthday—July 28th will be her birthday that’s coming up—and we would go out to a special lunch just the two of us,” she said with a smile. “That was a very special time, and we always had champagne, and I lover her so much.”
Rosanna explained that her family, despite being busy, is very close—they even have their own family text. However, she explains that her sister’s passing was very tough on them and they continue to mourn.
“It’s been fractured and hard since Alexis passed. It’s been really painful for all of us. We’re in PTSD,” the actress, 58, said.
Alexis passed away at 47 years old from complications stemming from HIV, which she had contracted almost 30 years earlier. She was one of the first transgender activists in Hollywood. Her family, including siblings Patricia, David, Rosanna and Richmond, released a statement at the time.
“Her career was cut short, not by her passing, but by her decision to live her truth and her life as a transgender woman,” they said. “Despite the fact that there are few parts for trans actors, she refused to play roles that were demeaning or stereotypical. She was a vanguard in the fight for understanding and acceptance for all trans people.”
Arquette also touched upon the LGBT clinic at USC’s Medical Center that she and her family started called the The Alexis Project in her late sister’s honor. The clinic acts as a way for queer youth to find safety alongside specialized medical and mental health staff, the group’s website explains.
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“Half of the homeless kids on the street are still figuring it out, questioning [their sexuality] and they’re often abused and that’s really sad,” Arquette told PEOPLE in May. “So this is a place for them to get some help and medical [treatment] and therapy. No one should feel ashamed of their sexuality or who they want to love.”
“Alexis was our hero and it’s a huge wound, an open gaping wound, in our family,” the actress said.