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Sutherland's Dying Regret: Late Actor Wished He Did More to Help Son Kiefer 'When He Needed it the Most'

Composite photo of Donald Sutherland and son Kiefer Sutherland.
Source: MEGA

Sources revealed Donald Sutherland's tragic regret before his death.

Jul. 4 2024, Published 2:00 p.m. ET

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Hunger Games star Donald Sutherland went to his death deeply distraught that he hadn't done more to help his actor son Kiefer when he was desperately battling the dual demons of drugs and alcohol, insiders claimed.

Sutherland passed away following a long illness at 88-years-old on June 20, as reported.

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donald sutherland died with lung issues used oxygen tank final days pp
Source: / MEGA

Donald passed away at 88 on June 20 after a long illness.

"Donald died regretted the fact that, for many years, his physical life with Kiefer was nonexistent," a source told us. "He loved his son but mostly from afar and he'd wished he'd helped him when he really need it the most."

The gaunt, thrice-married 6-foot-4 Dirty Dozen star once admitted, "With Kiefer, I don't see him enough."

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kiefer sutherland
Source: MEGA

Kiefer struggled with alcohol and once spent 48 days behind bars for driving drunk.

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Kiefer was Donald's son from his brief second marriage to the late actress Shirley Douglas, who he divorced 1970.

Two years ago, Kiefer, now 57 and the star of TV's spy series, 24, admitted, "I love him, though. Having grown up with my mother, there's a kind of distance between us. But I want to impress him. I want him to be proud of me."

And Donald was immensely proud of his son when they shot the 2015 western Forsaken.

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donald sutherland died with lung issues used oxygen tank final days
Source: MEGA

Sources said Donald was 'haunted' by the 'fact he nearly lost his firstborn son.'

Kiefer Sutherland
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But the Klute actor was haunted by his failure to help Kiefer when he nearly destroyed himself with booze. Once, a drunken Kiefer even tackled a Christmas tree in a Texas hotel lobby in 2007.

That same year, he was sentenced to 48 days in jail for drunk driving and breaking his probation for a 2004 DUI arrest.

Ironically, Donald admitted, "I didn't smoke dope, I only drank whiskey, and I didn't get drunk. I never did anything on set that might affect the work."

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donald sutherland
Source: MEGA

Kiefer once admitted he hoped he made his dad 'proud.'

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"The only time I really smoked dope was ... just before making love ... Because it seemed to make lovemaking last till the morning," the actor added.

But the source notes, "The fact that he very nearly lost his firstborn son haunted Donald till the day he died."

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As this outlet reported, Kiefer announced his father's death in an emotional social media post.

"With a heavy heart, I tell you that my father, Donald Sutherland, has passed away," Kiefer wrote in the X post. "I personally think one of the most important actors in the history of film. Never daunted by a role, good, bad or ugly. He loved what he did and did what he loved, and one can never ask for more than that. A life well lived."



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