While there’s no denying Sylvester Stallone needs no introduction considering he has been a key part of Hollywood for the past five decades, there was a point his personal life was a bit of a mystery. However, with Paramount+’s ‘The Family Stallone’ as well as Netflix’s ‘Sly,’ we’ve recently gotten a much deeper insight into not just his complicated early years but also who he really is as a family man. Yet, for now, if you simply wish to learn more about this actor, director, producer, plus writer’s parents, their influence on his whole being, and their ultimate fates, we’ve got the necessary details for you.
Who Were Sylvester Stallone’s Parents?
Although Sylvester was born in the Hell’s Kitchen area of New York on July 6, 1946, as the elder of two to Jacqueline “Jackie” Labofish and Francesco “Frank” Stallone Sr., he grew up all across the US. That’s because both his Breton French-Ukrainian Jewish mother and his Italian immigrant father often jumped from one place to another to make a name for themselves, just to forget caring for their kids. This is actually part of the reason he as well as his younger brother Frank Jr. spent a lot of their infancy either in foster care or in boarding schools before finally getting to rejoin the family as toddlers.
“Our father [a hairstylist] was very self-conscious because I don’t think he was educated,” Frank Jr. candidly revealed in ‘Sly.’ “Any kind of slight or insult would — he’d go off. Our mother [an astrologer, dancer, plus women’s professional wrestling promoter] was pretty bad too. She was pretty handy with the old hairbrush and the shower brush. She had these long nails that’d never break…” To this, Sylvester somberly added, “She was quite eccentric, colorful, very, very, very outspoken, and unpredictable,” prior to reiterating that his father was quite violent (“physical”) too.
Frank continued, “Our mother and father, it was like clockwork. I’d be up in bed, and you’d just hear them screaming and yelling… I was petrified ’cause, I mean, I could feel the reverberation… I think they were so self-absorbed with their own stuff… they just pawned us off.” Even his brother confirmed there were times he spent all 12 months of a year in a boarding house “’cause they didn’t have the time. They were both working. People say, ‘Oh, you feel deprived and you weren’t nurtured.’ Yeah, that’s true. Maybe the nurturing [now] comes from the respect and love of strangers.”
It thus comes as no surprise Jackie and Frank Sr. divorced for good when Sylvester was around 11, by which point they’d already gone from New York to Maryland to Washington to make a stable living. There, while the former launched a women’s gym named Barbella’s in 1954, the latter established a beauty school before stepping into more creative pursuits such as acting, sports, and writing. In fact, this early 1930s teen immigrant was a polo enthusiast, a game he proudly taught his elder son before suddenly stripping it away from him too out of alleged pure jealousy.
According to the Netflix original production, Sylvester was starting to get nationally ranked at 13, so in the middle of a match one day, a needlessly angry Frank Sr. left the stands, grabbed his son by the throat, threw him on the field, seized his horse, and walked off. This was one of the last times the actor ever played this sport — the actual final time was while he was in his 40s, playing a match against his father, who made a cheap move by hitting him in the back. As if all this wasn’t enough, the documentary even indicates the father was so competitive that he penned a boxing movie following the success of Rambo, only for it to never get picked up.
How Did Sylvester Stallone’s Parents Die?
While Sylvester left home at the age of 15 to join his remarried mother Jackie in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, before ultimately relocating to New York and Los Angeles to pursue his dreams, Frank Sr. moved on too. As per reports, he went on to marry three more times prior to welcoming three additional kids into this world — Bryan Stallone and Carla Francesca Stallone with Rose Marie, no kids with Sandra, plus Dante Alexander Stallone with Kathleen Rhodes. He truly remained married to the latter until his unfortunate demise from prostate cancer on July 11, 2011, at 91 — this came a mere year after he’d published a novel entitled ‘Stewart Lane.’
By this point, following years of not being in touch, Sylvester and Frank Sr. had thankfully managed to reconnect owing to Frank Jr., enabling the patriarch to die with complete closure in his heart. As for Jackie, from what we can tell, this teenage home runaway turned chorus girl turned dancer had eventually evolved into a celebrity astrologer/psychic in Los Angeles, as well as the manager of Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling (GLOW). So, this mother of four’s demise came following a rather fulfilling life (including two separate unions) on September 21, 2020 — she passed in her sleep like she’d always wanted at 98, making her cause of death natural.