On Monday, Jansen Panettiere’s family announced the cause of death for the young actor — an enlarged heart. Jansen, 28, died on Feb. 19. His body was found in his Nyack, New York, home. He was the younger brother of actress Hayden Panettiere.
The Panettiere family released a statement through ABC News:
“Jansen’s heart could be seen in his eyes, and his charm in his brilliant, engaging smile; his soul in his masterful and revealing paintings, and the joy of life in his dry wit. His charisma, warmth, compassion for others and his creative spirit will live forever in our hearts and in the hearts of all whom he encountered.”
The family added, “Though it offers little solace, the Medical Examiner reported Jansen’s sudden passing was due to cardiomegaly (enlarged heart), coupled with aortic valve complications.”
The New York Post reported that according to a report in the Orangetown Police Department, a friend found Jansen sitting in a chair in his home, unresponsive. The friend immediately tried to revive Panettiere — administering CPR and calling 911. EMTs arrived quickly but could not revive the 28-year-old actor.
Jansen suffered from mental health issues; friends became concerned when he missed a business meeting earlier that day.
Jansen’s father, Alan Panettiere, told police he had spoken with his son the day before he died, reporting he “sounded okay.”
According to the Post, police officials reported there were “no obvious signs of trauma observed.”
Panettiere was known as a fine voice actor; he worked on “Ice Age: The Meltdown,” “Blue’s Clues” and “Robots,” among others. He also appeared on one “Walking Dead” episode in 2019.
In 2004-2005, Jansen worked with his sister on Disney’s “Tiger Cruise” and “Racing Stripes” movies.
In 2005-2006, Jansen was the voice of Truman X in Nickelodeon’s animated series, “The X’s.”
Friends report that Jansen had a good sense of humor and a kind heart. He will be missed.
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