After hearing the news about Jett Travolta's death, seeing the photos and file footage of the Travolta family both my husband and I looked at each other and said "Jett had autism." As parents to an autistic child we can spot the signs. We later found out that Jett suffered from seizures which is common for some people on the autism spectrum. We were expecting over the next few days to hear some sort of public statement from a family member or representative stating that Jett had been diagnosed with autism and had died as a result of a seizure. Instead of this revelation there has just been gossip surrounding the 16 year old's untimely death and rumours about his nannies and Scientology's stance on treatments. I recently read an article reporting that John Travolta's brother Joey Travolta believed that Jett had autism and as a former teacher to special needs students he would know.
"John and Kelly have long denied suggestions that Jett had autism, saying instead that he suffered from seizures brought on by Kawasaki Syndrome."
I'm not sure if Jett was on the spectrum or if he had some other learning disability but it would surely help the autism community if this matter could be cleared up. It would be so disappointing if we learned that John and Kelly ignored their son's disability because their religion didn't recognize it or worse, decided to adopt a shame and secrecy stance in an attempt to hide their son's learning disability. So many celebrities come forward and help raise money and awareness for autism and other learning disabilities. It would be a real travesty if the Travoltas' fears of labelling their son outweighed the good they could have done to help the autism community. Maybe it's really none of our business and they do have their right to privacy even if they put themselves out there in the public eye for us all to gawk. Maybe my take on this is totally wrong and far be it for me to judge any family's decision when dealing with a disability. Stay tuned for more updates if the family decides to address their son's disability any further. I chose to post the photo above as it shows the tip-toe walking that tends to be a common autistic trait. See the link below for the Joey Travolta story. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/thedishrag/2009/01/john-travolta-1.html