Heather Duffy is opening up about the loss and legacy of her dear friend Anne Heche.
On Tuesday night while at a Los Angeles book signing event for Anne’s new posthumously published memoir, Call Me Anne, her former podcast co-host sat down with ET‘s Will Marfuggi to open up about the late star.
As Perezcious readers know, the Six Days, Seven Nights alum tragically passed away on August 11, days after a fiery car crash left her hospitalized. She was just 53.
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Before her death, the actress had been working diligently on her newly released book, which is why her bestie helped complete the memoir after she passed. We cannot imagine how emotional that must have been! Now, as she helps promote the project, Heather is thinking back on the very last conversation she shared with Anne. And, boy, is it heartbreaking! She told ET:
“We had just shot a podcast and I was late for dinner [with friends]… We were just chitchatting after the podcast and I looked at my phone and I realized it was late. And I looked at her and I said, ‘Girl, you got to get out of here, I got to go.’ She left my front porch and I said, ‘I love you,’ and she said, ‘I love you,’ and that was the last time I saw her.”
You really just never know when it’s going to be the last time with someone. Goes to show how important it is to tell the people you love how special they are to you every chance you get. Speaking of those Anne loved, she also left behind two beloved sons, Homer Laffoon, 20, and Atlas Heche Tupper, 13 (who was also at the book signing). Heather likes to think her friend’s legacy will live on in the boys, saying:
“The most beautiful part is that you know she lives on in those beautiful boys. She wanted her boys to be exactly who they are. To live honestly.”
“And kindness was the most important thing to Anne. If I could say the one thing that trumped everything for Anne, it was kindness.”
Hopefully, the siblings will keep this in mind amid their feud…
As for other aspects of Anne’s legacy, the Better Together podcaster insisted Anne’s relationship with Ellen DeGeneres in the 1990s — and her decision to be open about dating both men and women — was revolutionary. She reflected:
“She did it in such a bold and big way and took a big hit for it. She didn’t do a studio picture for 10 years. She was blacklisted, she was ridiculed. Back then, you were either gay or you were straight, there was nothing in between. She was given a hard time when she married a man after that. She really, really moved the needle on gender-free love.”
She went on:
“Now we look at red carpets [all the time] where same-sex couples are there. That’s not a thing, that’s a blip on the radar. And that doesn’t come without someone like Anne doing that heavy lifting early on and taking a stand and really impacting her life in a big way.”
She really sacrificed so much to live authentically!
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Despite the pain she suffered after going public with her romance, Duffy claimed Heche “was never regretful of it,” noting:
“If she could go back and do it the exact same way, she would have. She was somebody that lived in such truth and such honesty that she didn’t have a choice in the matter. She would never not choose honesty.”
Speaking of Anne’s rocky career, the PR maven hopes she will also be remembered for her acting projects, declaring:
“She was one of the best actresses of her time. I mean, she has an entire body of work to back that up. She should be remembered for that.”
It’s true. Anne was in some iconic films, like Spread, Donnie Brasco, Volcano, and most recently, Girl in Room 13. Her career may have been impacted by coming out, but that doesn’t mean she didn’t leave a major mark on the industry. Overall, Heather had this to say about Anne’s impact on the world:
“She should be remembered for her kindness, she should be remembered for the brave stand she took that changed the world, she should be remembered for preaching, and living, and encouraging people to be themselves and to live out loud and to embrace who they are and to make them feel safe in that.”
Such kind words!! We’re thinking of Anne’s loved ones. While it’s exciting to see her book finally reach readers, it must also be a very bittersweet day knowing Anne’s not around to see her hard work pay off. Will U be reading Call Me Anne? Let us know (below)!
[Image via Better Together/YouTube & Anne Heche/Instagram]