The Hollywood actress was just 34 years old when she passed away in 1967 from injuries she sustained in a late-night car accident. Driver Ronald B. Harrison and companion Samuel S. Brody also perished. Three of her five children were riding in the back seat. They survived.
“Jayne’s greatest regret would be not growing old with her children,” he said. “But I can also tell you that she never really left. She lets her presence be known. And it’s so Jayne.”
The 55-year-old’s sister Mariska Hargitay agreed.
“She’s still with me,” the actress told the outlet. “I look at my life now and think, I’m on a TV show, I run a foundation, I run a household, I’m a mom, I’m a wife, I’m a lot of things. I realize I’m like that because It’s what I know.”
The “Law & Order: SVU” star, 57, revealed that her mother’s ability to balance a thriving family life and a high-profile career has inspired her over the years. Hargitay is a proud mom of three.
“She was just so ahead of her time,” said Hargitay. “She was an inspiration, she had this appetite for life.”
Back in 2018, Hargitay opened up to People magazine about how she coped with the loss of her mother.
“The way I’ve lived with loss is to lean into it,” she said at the time. “As the saying goes, the only way out is through. In my life, certainly, I’ve tried to avoid pain, loss, feeling things. But I’ve learned instead to really lean into it because sooner or later you have to pay the piper.”
“I’m not saying it’s easy, and it’s certainly hasn’t been for me,” Hargitay admitted. “There’s been a lot of darkness. But on the other side things can be so bright.”
The outlet noted that Hargitay teared up while talking about Mansfield.
“My mother was this amazing, beautiful, glamorous sex symbol – but people didn’t know that she played the violin and had a 160 IQ and had five kids and loved dogs,” she shared. “She was just so ahead of her time. She was an inspiration, she had this appetite for life, and I think I share that with her.”
“Someone once said about [remembering] my mother: ‘All you have to do is look in the mirror,’” Hargitay added. “She’s with me still.”