Breaking their silence on the former child actor’s sudden passing, the Panettieres say in a statement that the ‘Walking Dead’ star died from an enlarged heart.

AceShowbizHayden Panettiere and her family have broken their silence on her brother’s shocking death. In a statement released roughly a week after Jansen Panettiere‘s sudden passing, the Panettieres remember him for his “warmth, compassion for others and his creative spirit,” while also revealing his official cause of death.

“Jansen’s heart could be seen in his eyes, and his charm in his brilliant, engaging smile; his soul in his masterful and revealing paintings, and the joy of life in his dry wit,” his family, including his mother Lesley Vogel, father Skip Panettiere and sister Hayden, said in the statement to ABC News on Monday, February 27.

“His charisma, warmth, compassion for others, and his creative spirit will live forever in our hearts and in the hearts of all whom he encountered,” they added of the late 28-year-old actor.

The grieving family went on sharing that autopsy report has revealed Jansen died from an enlarged heart. They said, “Though it offers little solace, the Medical Examiner reported Jansen’s sudden passing was due to cardiomegaly (enlarged heart), coupled with aortic valve complications.”

“We sincerely appreciate the outpouring of love and support towards our family as we navigate this unthinkable loss, and ask that we be gifted our privacy during this time of mourning,” the family concluded their statement. “We love you so much Jansen and you will be in our hearts forever.”

Jansen was found dead inside his apartment in Nyack last weekend after he failed to show up for a meeting on Sunday, February 19. A friend went to his apartment and found the former child actor sitting upright in a chair, unresponsive, called 911 and started CPR.

According to TMZ, his father Skip told cops that he still talked to his son on Saturday night and he sounded “okay.”

Jansen was Hayden’s younger brother and her only sibling. He got his first television role on the hit Disney Channel show “Even Stevens” and went on to star in a host of well-known productions, including “Ice Age: The Meltdown” and “Robots“. He was also a graffiti artist.

While Hayden has not spoken publicly of her brother’s death, his girlfriend Catherine Michie has posted a touching tribute on Instagram. “Jansen, I met you only a year ago, but you have been my best friend and biggest fan,” she captioned a carousel of photos of their special moments together on February 20. “I will never forget the first time I saw your face and the first things you said to me. Words cannot express the pain of knowing I won’t hear your laugh again.”

She added, “I hope you find peace, and I’m sorry I wasn’t there when you needed me most. The world is better because you were in it. I know we will paint together again someday. I’ll always be your sugarpop. Someone wake me up and tell me this is a dream.”

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