HOLMBY HILLS (CBSLA.com) — The eldest children of legendary TV and radio broadcaster Casey Kasem say his wife is holding their ailing 81-year-old father prisoner inside his Holmby Hills estate.
Kasem, who suffers from Parkinson’s disease, had three children with his first wife. They divorced in 1970.
The youngest of those three children, Julia, told KCAL9’s Dave Lopez the family, Kasem’s longtime agent and his brother are so frustrated about not being about to see Kasem they protested in front of the estate Tuesday demanding to visit him.
Julia said she hasn’t seen her father since August.
“This is our last straw,” she said, “This is our last straw. We couldn’t take it any more.”
She added, “We know how many people love dad. How special he is to a lot of people. We figured, you know what? Let’s let everybody know we care so much, we want him to know — we’re not abandoning you.”
Kasem married “Cheers” actress Jean Thompson in 1980. The couple has one daughter.
Lopez asked Julia if this was all about a strain in the family’s relationship with Kasem’s current wife.
“Unfortunately, yes,” she replied.
Lopez reached out to Jean Kasem for a comment, but she chose not to respond to the family’s charges.
“We have no way of contacting him or no way of answering what we are asking, and so this is it,” Casey’s brother, Mouner Kasem, said.
Kasem’s brother, his children, his agent, and long-time friends all say the same thing: Jean Kasem has cut them off, according to Lopez.
According to the family, every Sunday, like clockwork, Kasem would be driven from his estate to daughter Julia’s house for a visit, but that stopped in August.
They quote Jean as saying, “Dad is no longer available.”
At the estate Wednesday, Lopez said a man answered the intercom, did not identify himself, and said he didn’t want to be interviewed.
The man did tell Lopez, off-camera, that he didn’t understand what all the fuss was about. He said that some of the people complaining about not having access to Kasem aren’t even family members.
When asked if Mr. Kasem was doing okay, the man replied, “He is doing just fine” and then hung up the intercom.
Julia had a message for her father.
“Daddy, I love you so much and I can’t wait to put my arms around you,” she said.