IT'S the heartache Zsa Zsa Gabor took to her grave: She led a life of wealth and fame with nine husbands — yet the life of her only child, daughter Francesca Hilton, was a train wreck!
Zsa Zsa passed away Dec. 18 at age 99 of a heart attack and never learned her tragic child had already died!
"The way Francesca's sad life turned out was Zsa Zsa's biggest regret," says a source.
In her 1991 autobiography, "One Lifetime Is Not Enough," the Hungarian-born actress shockingly revealed her pregnancy with Francesca came from a rape by then-husband Conrad Hilton!
The couple divorced before Francesca was born and when Conrad died in 1979, he left his only daughter a meager $100,000, with most of his wealth going to charity.
Incredibly Conrad's estate was worth about $200 million at the time, including massive stock interests in the Hilton hotels.
But Francesca — who tried both acting and stand-up comedy — died penniless and alone, living her final days in a Hollywood flophouse … or in her car, when she couldn't afford rent!
Embroiled in a bitter dispute with Zsa Zsa's last husband, Prince Frédéric von Anhalt, the broke, 67-year-old photographer passed away from a stroke on Jan. 6, 2015.
It was a startling fall from grace for a scion of Hollywood royalty who once graced red carpets with her glamorous mother and even appeared in the 1971 Jack Nicholson film "A Safe Place."
Despite her family's riches, Francesca was disinherited after a futile attempt to challenge her father's will years ago.
"It's terribly sad that Francesca's life ended this way," Sharmagne Leland-St. John, a close friend, says.
"At the end, she was literally living out of her car. It was so sad."
Before her death, a vicious war exploded between Francesca and Zsa Zsa's spouse, Frédéric, after he banned his stepdaughter from seeing her mother over a past legal dispute.
Francesca had to obtain a court order to have a deathbed reconciliation with her mother.
She died soon afterward — and no one came forward to claim her body. And Zsa Zsa never even knew her daughter had died!
"If they had talked over the last year or so, then maybe I would have told her — but because they didn't talk for so long, there is no reason to tell my wife," Frédéric said.
But friends say even though Zsa Zsa didn't know her daughter was dead, she claimed she was being visited by her spirit.
Adds a friend, "Now, in death, they'll finally be reunited."
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