John Travolta tells court of autistic son’s death
John Travolta told yesterday of his desperate attempts to save his dying son after he suffered a seizure at their holiday home in the Bahamas — and acknowledged publicly for the first time that the boy had suffered from autism.
Speaking so quietly that at one point he was asked by the judge to speak up, Travolta confirmed what had long been rumoured in Hollywood but never been discussed in public by the family. “My son was autistic and suffered from seizure disorder. Every five to ten days he suffered seizures which lasted 45 seconds to a minute,” he revealed.
One of the religion’s tenets is that mental illness is psychosomatic and can only be realistically treated through spiritual healing. Scientology does not recognise autism as a real affliction and shuns psychiatry as a “pseudo-science”, putting Travolta’s admission yesterday at odds with a church in which he is a leading figure.
His testimony, which was set to continue last night following a short adjournment, is considered key to the prosecution’s case against Tarino Lightbourne, a paramedic, and Pleasant Bridgewater, a former senator, who are charged with trying to extort $25 million from the actor by threatening to go public with a document relating to Jett’s medical care.
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