Ric Ocasek’s Widow Remembers His Last Day
Ric Ocasek's widow, Paulina Porizkova, has opened up about their life together, detailing his last day and her discovery of his body.
Speaking to Rolling Stone three weeks after the death of the Cars frontman, Porizkova remembered Ocasek's "incredible gentleness" and his work ethic. She said he was continually writing in his studio whenever he was home, noting that he had a few songs written several years ago that were "entirely new and different and still very him and really hooky."
Porizkova stressed that his death was not the result of complications from the surgery he had a few weeks before his death. While she didn't disclose the procedure performed, she said it was a success and that Ocasek "was recuperating really well." She added that it brought the couple, who separated amicably in 2017, and their two sons, Jonathan and Oliver, together.
"In the weirdest of ways, the surgery was a blessing," she said. 'We had two weeks of just the four of us watching our favorite TV shows and me cooking or ordering in and hanging out. In this cloud of awfulness, that was a silver lining."
That last evening, their youngest son Oliver was looking after Ocasek. Porizkova stopped by with some cookies, but Ocasek told her he planned to save them for the next day because he'd already had some cookies and that he wanted to get to bed early because he was in pain.
"And that was the last time I saw him alive," she said.
When she returned in the morning, she checked up on him in and, thinking he was asleep, did some chores. But by 11AM she thought "something's not right." She went back to the bedroom and found him in the same position.
"And at that point, I knew, but I couldn’t believe it," she said. "I walked up to him and he still looked asleep. Except he was really, really still and his eyes were a little bit open. I thought he was waking up, actually. I was about to wave my hand in front of his face and go, 'Hey, I brought you coffee.' But I touched his cheek and it was like touching marble. That was pretty fucking awful."
She avoided calling 911 immediately, in order to give her and their sons a chance to say goodbye and spend a few hours holding hands around the bed. Then, two minutes after placing the call, "there were paparazzi at our house. That’s just disgusting."
Porizkova criticized the medical examiner's decision to disclose some of Ocasek's health issues, including emphysema and atrial fibrilliation, saying that they "were all very moderate and manageable," and that her late husband didn't have high blood pressure.
"I don’t exactly understand the postmortem," she added. "And I’m so super-bummed and pissed off that stuff like this is public knowledge. Thanks — so while we grieve, why don’t you all take apart what my husband died of?"