The Young and the Restless actor was found dead Feb. 3 in his home

By Octavia Akoulitchev
March 05, 2019 03:53 PM

Friends and family gathered Monday at the Calvary Community Church in Westlake, California, to celebrate the life of Kristoff St. John. The actor was found dead Feb. 3 in his home at the age of 52.

St. John became a child star with a shining debut in the series Happy Days. He continued to act in television shows throughout his life, most notably in the long-running soap opera The Young and the Restless for nearly three decades.

Many costars from the show attended the funeral to pay their respects, including Melody Thomas Scott, Hunter King and Jason Thompson.

One woman who acted with him on the CBS show 20 years ago and did not wish to be named told PEOPLE, “I doubt there will be anyone missing from the show today; he was so loved. You won’t meet anyone with an unkind word to say about him.”

Credit: Renard Garr/Getty

Although St. John’s fiancée Kseniya Mikhaleva was unable to attend due to visa issues, many family members were present. His father, Christopher, gave the eulogy, and was accompanied by St. John’s daughter, Lola, and his cousin on stage.

He began, “My baby boy Kristoff, I never planned to be standing here on this day. Honestly, I always thought that Kristoff would be standing here to talk about me.”

RELATED VIDEO: Shemar Moore Tearfully Remembers Kristoff St. John: ‘He Embraced Me Like a Brother’

He elaborated on their close relationship: “When Kristoff was born I held him in my arms, just like this, and he was the most remarkable little baby I’d ever seen. He taught me how to be a better boy, because he knew things about me that I didn’t even realize. Well, we started growing up together, me and Kristoff, and we had the greatest time. He taught me how to laugh and play. We did everything together.”

With the words, “Kristoff, I love you ,man, with all my heart and soul, my baby boy,” he paused, holding back tears. Stepping back to hug his nephew, he thanked the audience and embraced his granddaughter. They all walked off stage together.

The moment was painfully reminiscent of St. John mourning his own son, Julian, four years ago, and the shadow that cast upon the star’s life was referred to several times throughout the service.

Julian (left) and Kristoff St. John
| Credit: Julian St. John/Facebook; Robert Voets/CBS/Getty

But Kristoff’s life was also full of happiness, and this too was on full display. A touching slideshow video took the congregation through his colorful life: There were photos of him jumping on the beach, videos of him howling in the car with his dogs, and snaps of that cheeky gap-toothed grin from his child-star days. There he was as a young father, holding his baby high in his arms, and there again, no less proud, holding up an Emmy.

One characteristically hilarious selfie video of him singing and dancing in the car (and trying to get his daughter and dog to join in) made the whole audience laugh through their tears. At the end, the whole congregation stood and clapped. Many cheered.

After the sermon, his daughters led the family out, the song ‘Somewhere over the rainbow’ playing behind them. St. John was buried beside Julian, who died by suicide following a lifelong battle with mental illness.

St. John is also survived by daughter Paris (with ex-wife Mia St John, also Julian’s mother), and daughter Lola (with ex-wife Allana Nadal).