Suffering from cancer since 2017, Bernard Tapie bowed out after a long fight, in 2021. But as his son Stéphane explains – in your Closer magazine this Friday, January 20 – a high-profile death has undermined the businessman who then stopped fighting.
It was in illness that father and son met. In June 2017, Bernard Tapie learned that he had cancer of the stomach and esophagus. For four years – until his death in April 2021 – the businessman struggled to survive this disease. And in his fight, he was able to count on the unwavering support of his wife Dominique but also of his children. It was at this time that Bernard Tapie actually bonded with his eldest son, Stephane. “I knew Tapie better than my father. except on the last four months that I haven’t left him“, tells us Stéphane Tapie in an interview to be found in full in your magazine Closer – on newsstands this Friday, January 20 – on the occasion of the release of his book How to say goodbye to you (Ed. Michel Lafon). And to add:Throughout his battle with cancer, he overwhelmed me with his authenticity, honesty and sincerity.“
Nevertheless, Sophie and Laurent’s half-brother had to deal with a more complicated episode. This is when his father let go. Yes, the gave up fighting for his life – knowing the fight lost in advance. It was following a highly publicized death that Bernard Tapie laid down his arms. “Johnny’s death hit him hard“, recognizes Stéphane Tapie. Especially since he wanted to take an example from the Taulier to slow down the pangs of the disease. “He absolutely wanted to replay a play because he knew that for Johnny, going back on stage with Les Vieilles Canailles was his lifeline“, recalls his son. But it was another death that dashed his hopes. “Bebel’s finished him off“, he laments, before specifying: “He stopped fighting at that point.“
Why Stéphane Tapie refrains from “giving up”
Stephane Tapie tries to console himself thinking that, up there, his father has regained his vigor and his legendary banter. “Maybe my dad has the right privileges and he’s going to organize something crazy, in his image. In any case, he must create a good atmosphere up there“, he imagines. Nevertheless, it takes nothing away from his pain. The man – who lost his mother prematurely – feels “like an orphan“.”I had been very prepared for my father’s death, but not for this orphan status. Obviously I have soft shots, but I forbid myself to give up“, he nuances all the same. A prohibition that he imposes on himself for the good of his children. “I am lucky to have four beautiful children who are my reason for being“, he concludes. A precious strength.
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