Frank Sinatra’s grandson and namesake, Frank Sinatra III, was hospitalized in the greater Los Angeles area on Monday night after he tried to take his own life. Responding to a 911 call reporting a suicide attempt, paramedics arriving at Frank Sinatra III’s house found the 32-year-old grandson of Old Blue Eyes, one of America’s most legendary entertainers, conscious after an attempted drug overdose.
Frank III, the son of Frank Sinatra, Jr., took an overdose pills, the entertainment Web site TMZ reports.
Sinatra the Third was taken to Downey Regional Medical Center in the Los Angeles suburb of Downey where he lives. The grandson of one of “The Chairman of the Board” — the undisputed leader of Hollywood’s Rat Pack, the friend of Presidents and First Ladies and one of America’s greatest entertainers — has always been reclusive and has shunned any publicity.
PEOPLE Magazine quoted Sinatra’s Aunt Dorothy, who visited him in the hospital, as saying her nephew was “doing okay.” A journalist working for the entertainment rag had called Frank Sinatra III’s hospital room and Aunt Dorothy picked up.
“He’s been having a very tough time,” Aunt Dorothy was quoted as saying about Frank III’s personal life. “He’s doing better now. We think he’ll pull through.”
Aunt Dorothy intimated that Frank III was devastated emotionally by a failed romance, comparing what he was going through to his grandfather’s turmoil after the collapse of his marriage to Ava Gardner. Frank, Sr. reportedly made a suicide attempt at that time, too, as his singing career was on the wane due to vocal cord trouble.
“Let’s just say it’s very similar to what his grandfather went through with Ava Gardner,” Aunt Dorothy told People.
Frank Sinatra, Sr. was an only child, and Frank Sinatra, Jr.’s siblings are Nancy and Tina, so Aunt Dorothy must be on the maternal side of Frank Sinatra III’s family.
Old Blue Eyes
After his career hit the skids in early ’50s, Frank Sinatra, Sr. made a career comeback as an actor in the movie From Here to Eternity (1953), winning a Best Supporting Actor Oscar in 1954. His singing career blossomed in the 1950s, too. His voice was different than the mellifluous instrument he had in the 1940s, but it was a wiser, more confidant Sinatra who created some of the greatest music of his generation after recovering his voice.
While other pop singers might have had better pipes after Frank blew his out, no one could phrase a lyric better. He remained a superstar until his death at the age of 82 in 1998.
After the death of the legendary entertainer, Bono of the group U2 eulogized, “Frank Sinatra was the 20th Century.”
Bono explained the roots of Sinatra’s greatness: “He was modern, he was complex, he had swing and attitude. He was the big bang of pop…. The man invented pop music.”