Bradley Cooper Recalls Late Father's Battle With Cancer During Heartfelt Speech

by Jackie Willis 12:31 PM PDT, April 15, 2016
Playing Bradley Cooper Recalls Late Father's Battle With Cancer During Heartfelt Speech

Bradley Cooper opened up more than usual when reflecting on the life of his father, Charles J. Cooper, who died in 2011 of lung cancer.

The 41-year-old actor spoke about his father's battle on Wednesday night at a gala put on by Napster co-founder Sean Parker to celebrate the launch of Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy. "I was in a very lucky position because I was able to put everything on hold in all aspects of my life and completely focus on taking care of him," Cooper recalled (via ABC News).

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Getting emotional, the Oscar nominee said that watching his father battle the disease was "just simply overwhelming, incredibly stressful, complex and all-consuming."

"I can't even imagine how much more difficult it is for those patients and the families that are less fortunate than I was that simply can't afford to pay for both treatment and rent," he continued. "My hope is that one day every person fighting cancer will receive the full support they need to maintain their quality of life from the day of diagnosis to the end of their treatment, regardless of economic or social status."

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Cooper added that he's working with Parker's organization to offer this support and ultimately beat cancer. "This is the start," he said, "and, hopefully, 20 years from now we’re going to look back and cancer isn’t going to be this scary thing; it's not going to be a death sentence."

Photo: Getty Images

The event boasted lots of celebrity guests, including Katy Perry, Orlando Bloom, Allison Williams, Lady Gaga, John Legend, Sean Penn and Minka Kelly.

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In 2013, Cooper opened up to British GQ magazine about how much of his success he owed to his father. "I used to be the kid that got the shakes if I had to talk in public," he said. "Now, I just don't get nervous about that stuff."

After his father's death, Cooper invited his mother, Gloria Cooper, to live with him in his Los Angeles home.

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