In a sweet photo shared via his Instagram on Wednesday, the Pulp Fiction star, 67, paid tribute to Preston on what would have been her 59th birthday.
“Happy Birthday Kelly. We miss and love you very much,” he captioned his post.
Preston passed away in July 2020 at age 57 after a two-year battle with breast cancer. The actress kept her diagnosis a secret from fans.
“It is with a very heavy heart that I inform you that my beautiful wife Kelly has lost her two-year battle with breast cancer,” Travolta wrote on Instagram at the time. “She fought a courageous fight with the love and support of so many. Kelly’s love and life will always be remembered.
“I will be taking some time to be there for my children who have lost their mother, so forgive me in advance if you don’t hear from us for a while. But please know that I will feel your outpouring of love in the weeks and months ahead as we heal.”
Travolta and Preston shared three children: Ella, 21, Benjamin, 10, and their late son Jett, who died in 2009 at age 16.
In May, the Grease star opened up about the process of grieving.
“Grief is personal and finding your own path is what could lead to healing. It’s different than someone else’s journey,” he told Esquire Spain. “The most important thing you can do to help people going through grief is allow them the space to live it and not complicate their journey with your own.”
The actor also reflected on an emotional conversation he had with his son, Ben, following Preston’s death. Ben said he was afraid Travolta would die after his mother did.
“I said, ‘Well, it’s a very different thing.’ And I went through the differences about my longevity and her limited life. I said, ‘But you know, Ben… You always love the truth and I’m going to tell you the truth about life. Nobody knows when they’re gonna go or when they’re going to stay.'”
“Your brother [Jett] left at 16. Too young,” Travolta continued. “Your mother left at 57. That was too young. But who’s to say? I could die tomorrow. You could. Anybody can. So let’s look at it like it’s part of life. You don’t know exactly. You just do your best at trying to live the longest you can.”
Travolta and Preston married in 1991, after meeting on the set of the 1989 movie The Experts, in which they co-starred.
For a daily dose of 9Honey, subscribe to our newsletter here