Skye McCole Bartusiak, the actress who played Mel Gibson's youngest daughter in the 2000 Revolutionary War drama “The Patriot,” has died at the age of 21.
“We lost our girl,” Helen McCole Bartusiak told CNN. “She was a kind and really beautiful girl.”
Though cause of death is unknown at this point, Bartusiak states that her daughter had been suffering from epileptic seizures over the last several days and may have “had a seizure and choked and nobody was there.” The actress had been experiencing seizures since the time she was a baby, though they ceased for several years before returning last week, according to her mother.
“I've done CPR on that kid more than one time and it just didn't work this time,” Bartusiak said, stating that paramedics also attempted resuscitation but could not get a heartbeat.
Bartusiak made her screen debut in 1999 with a small role in the ABC miniseries “Storm of the Century” before going on to rack up a string of big-screen credits including “The Patriot” and “Riding in Cars with Boys.” Her other credits include “Firestarter: Rekindled,” “Against the Ropes,” “Boogeyman,” a recurring role on FOX's “24” and several TV guest appearances. Her last screen appearance was in the low-budget 2012 thriller “Sick Boy.”