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“This is stuff that I’ve had for you for a long time," Dannielynn Birkhead's dad Larry tells her in a new two-hour 20/20 special

By Maria Pasquini
February 06, 2021 10:30 AM
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Dannielynn Birkhead is learning more about mom Anna Nicole Smith, who died when she was just a baby.

In a new two-hour 20/20 special, which aired on Friday, the late star's now-14-year-old daughter accompanied dad Larry Birkhead on a trip to Mexia, Texas, where Smith — who died in 2007 from an accidental overdose at age 39 — grew up.

While in Los Angeles, Larry also showed his daughter some of Smith's memorabilia from her life and career for the first time.

"Dannielynn has no idea that she's going to see these things. All this is a surprise," he said in the special. "She has a big heart like her mom had, I think she could appreciate these things."

Among Smith's most personal belongings were artwork, family photographs, as well as some of her most memorable outfits — like the dress she wore on her wedding to late oil tycoon J. Howard Marshall II

"This is stuff that I've had for you for a long time. Do you want to see it?" Larry asked his teenage daughter.

Danielynn Birkhead
Danielynn Birkhead
| Credit: 2020/Twitter
Danielynn Birkhead sees Anna Nicole's items for first time
Danielynn Birkhead
| Credit: 2020/Twitter

While taking a walk down memory lane, Larry even showed his daughter a photo taken on one of his dates with Smith. 

"This is a Blondie T-shirt. We went on a date. Who's that cool guy?" he said while holding up a photo from the night out. 

"Please stop, like I already told you, please stop," Dannielynn said with a smile. 

Fortunately, Smith was a little more impressed with his look at the time. "She thought I was cool," he added.

"When we talk about Anna Nicole, there were a lot of happy moments for her," Larry said in the special. "There were a lot of highs before there were a lot of lows." 

"Anna should be remembered as this larger than life figure that was really a caring, giving person. A beautiful lady who loved her fans and loved her family," he added.

During their trip to Texas, Larry and Dannielynn met with Smith's childhood best friend, Jo McLemore.

"You are your mommy. You look just like her," McLemore said while meeting her late friend's daughter for the first time.  

Together, the group traveled to Jim's Krispy Fried Chicken, a local restaurant where McLemore worked with Smith.  

"I was working here and she would come in every day and she'd order a large drink, but she always looked really sad to me," McLemore recalled. "Once she started working here we immediately hit it off."

"One of the memories I have of her is we'd sit here together and stare out the window and just watch traffic go by," she added. "She was so perfect to me. Perfect face...and I would tell her, 'You are so, so pretty.' "

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In the special, which aired amid the 14-year anniversary of Smith's death, Larry also reflected on the late model, actress and television personality's enduring legacy. 

"This was a small-town girl who went to the Supreme Court twice, a Playboy Bunny, a Guess model, an actress, that came from the sticks of Mexia in Texas," he said, according to ABC News. "You couldn't make this up, and it happened. She lived it. She lived fast and she lived big."

"She inspired a lot of people. I think she changed a lot of lives. That's why I think, to this day, there's still a fascination about Anna Nicole, and I think there will be for a long time," he added.