Paulina Porizkova Recalls Final Moments with Ric Ocasek Before His Death, Why She Didn't Call 911
In a new interview with Rolling Stone, the model, 54, opened up about the late music legend and father of her two children — Oliver, 21 and Jonathan, 25 — and remembered her last moments with him before his sudden death.
Porizkova was the one to find him in his home after he had died in his sleep after he had undergone surgery two weeks earlier, which Porizkova said was “not at all” the cause behind his death.
“I don’t know how much I want to say about the surgery, but it was successful. He was recuperating really well,” she told the outlet. “So his passing was a f—ing shock.”
Porizkova recalled bringing home cookies for Ocasek the night before his death.
“I stopped and got some cookies for Ric. When I got there, he was sitting in his usual chair and I said, ‘I got some gooey cookies,’ and he said, ‘OK, thanks, hon — I had some terrible cookies because I was in the mood for cookies, but I’ll have your gooey cookies tomorrow. I think I’m going to bed early since I‘m feeling a little sore,’ ” she shared. “And that was the last time I saw him alive.”
The next morning, the mom of two returned and checked in on Ocasek and when she peeked in his room, she saw him in his usual sleeping position and assumed everything was alright.
“I did some chores and then it was 11, and I thought, ‘This is weird, there’s something not right about this,’ ” she said. “I poured the coffee and came upstairs to give it to him and he was in the exact same position; he hadn’t even moved a little bit. And at that point, I knew, but I couldn’t believe it.”
Porizkova added, “I walked up to him and he still looked asleep. Except he was really, really still and his eyes were a little bit open. I thought he was waking up, actually. I was about to wave my hand in front of his face and go, ‘Hey, I brought you coffee.’ But I touched his cheek and it was like touching marble. That was pretty f—ing awful.”
Porizkova says she waited to call 911 because Ocasek’s manager warned her that chaos would follow and she wanted her family to properly say goodbye to him.
“I wanted Ric’s sons to get here so we could all say goodbye to him. So we waited, and we got to circle the bed and hold hands and really say goodbye,” she explained. “We were here with his shape for many hours after his death. It was kind of wonderful because we all understood he was gone. He definitely left us.”
“But the minute I called 911, literally two minutes [after], there were paparazzi at our house,” she continued. “That’s just disgusting.”
Porizkova also revealed that she was “baffled” by the New York medical examiner’s autopsy, which stated that Ocasek died of hypertensive and atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, also known as atherosclerosis — which is a plaque build-up in the arteries and can cause hardening and/or narrowing in the heart muscle.
Ocasek’s pulmonary emphysema, which causes a decrease in respiratory function and breathlessness, was listed as a contributing factor.
Looking back, Porizkova said his surgery was a “blessing,” as it unknowingly brought their entire family together one last time before Ocasek’s death.
“We had two weeks of just the four of us watching our favorite TV shows and me cooking or ordering in and hanging out,” she explained. “In this cloud of awfulness, that was a silver lining.”
Ocasek and Porizkova, who first met while filming the music video for The Cars’ song “Drive” in 1984, announced their split in May 2018 after 28 years of marriage. However, they were not legally divorced prior to his death.
They share two adult sons together, Jonathan and Oliver.
Ocasek also has four kids, Christopher, Adam, Eron and Derek Otcasek, from previous relationships.