CNN anchor Anderson Cooper contributes to a new podcast, All There Is with Anderson Cooper, in which he reveals parts of his personal history that he rarely speaks about.
As Cooper repacked up the apartment of his beloved mother, Gloria Vanderbilt, less than two years after the death of his mother in 2019 at the age of 95, he began recording the podcast alone.
A legendary fashion designer and artist, Vanderbilt ranked among the most influential figures of her time.
Her journey consisted of tragedy, and she triumphed throughout her life. She was the great-great-granddaughter of railroad and shipping tycoon Cornelius Vanderbilt.
Cooper found a fascinating collection of secret journals and keepsakes in her apartment.
One box contained telegrams sent to his mother by Frank Sinatra during their 1950s relationship.
Cooper explained, “They are exactly what you would hope loving telegrams from Frank Sinatra would sound like.”
Wyatt Cooper, Cooper’s father, died suddenly of a heart attack at age 50 in 1978.
At 23, Carter, Cooper’s brother, committed suicide in front of Gloria Vanderbilt 10 years after his dad’s death.
A few belongings Vanderbilt left for Cooper contained notes that she left behind before she died.
The findings include the most disturbing notes attached to Vanderbilt’s blouse and skirt when Carter passed away.
As Cooper went through his mother’s things, he also found the stuff of his father and brother.
Following the process, he said he felt overwhelmed and began talking with others about grief and loss.
Cooper said, “I was surprised how lonely I felt as the last surviving member of my immediate family, and I discovered that talking with others, who’d moved through grief and spoke the language of loss, was life-changing.”
Wyatt and Sebastian, Cooper’s two sons, motivated him to face his grief.
Additionally, he said, “I didn’t want to pass on the pain and sadness I’ve felt for much of my life to them.”
Cooper continued, “I’m not going to pretend I don’t feel a terrible sense of loss any longer, far from it.”
He added, “But I think about that sadness and grief differently now, and I really hope this podcast will help others as well.”