The Panettiere family remembers late actor Jansen, says he died of an enlarged heart

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Jansen Panettiere’s family, including his sister Hayden, are paying tribute to the late actor a week after he died suddenly at just 28 years old.

“Jansen’s heart was in his eyes, and his charm in his brilliant, winning smile; his soul in his masterful and revealing paintings, and the joy of life in his deadpan wit,” his family, including his mother Lesley Vogel, father Skip Panettiere and sister, “Scream VI” star Hayden Panettiere, said in a statement to ABC News.

The family added: “His charisma, warmth, compassion for others and his creative spirit will live forever in our hearts and in the hearts of everyone he encountered.”

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The family also said in its statement that Jansen died of an enlarged heart.

“While of little comfort, the medical examiner reported that Jansen’s sudden death was due to cardiomegaly (enlarged heart), coupled with aortic valve complications,” the family said.

Panettiere was known for his voice acting in “Ice Age: The Meltdown” and “The X’s”, as well as on-screen roles in the Nickelodeon movie “The Last Day of Summer” and the AMC series “The Walking Dead”.

Gregg Deguire/WireImage, FILE

Actors Hayden Panettiere (R) and brother Jansen Panettiere arrive at the 2013 Environmental Media Awards at Warner Bros. Studios on October 19, 2013 in Burbank, California.

“We sincerely appreciate the outpouring of love and support to our family as we navigate this unthinkable loss, and ask that you grant our privacy at this time of mourning,” the family said. “We love you so much Jansen and you will be in our hearts forever.”

Jansen Panettiere was a talented artist and posted much of his work on Instagram. He had also just shared a photo of his sister, who is five years his senior, cutting his hair a few weeks before his death.

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Following in the footsteps of his older sister, he tried his hand at acting and landed his first television role in the popular Disney Channel show “Even Stevens”.

Panettiere later appeared in several TV shows and alongside his sister in the 2004 Disney Channel movie ‘Tiger Cruise’.

His last television role was in an episode of “The Walking Dead” in 2019, playing Casper, a member of the Hilltop Colony.

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