AceShowbiz - The O'Neals are patching things up after decades of public spats, reconciliations and estrangement. Brushing off their differences to be at each other's side in these trying times, the family has gathered for the first time in 17 years.
On Sunday, September 13, Sean McEnroe took to his Instagram page to share a picture from the family reunion with his grandfather Ryan O'Neal, mother Tatum O'Neal and his two siblings, Kevin, 34, and Emily, 29. They were all smiles as they were sitting together in a Los Angeles home.
Sean, who is the middle child of Tatum, treasured the rare moment as he wrote in the caption, "This is one of the most memorable photos of my life." Acknowledging the family's strained relationship for the past years, he recalled, "The last time we were all together was at the 30-year Paper Moon Anniversary in 2003."
"I could cry tears of gratitude that everyone in this photo is still alive and that we were all able to come together again after so many years of hardship," the 32-year-old added. With their family reunion, Sean shared a message of hope amid the wildfires that are ravaging California, Oregon and Washington, "The entire West Coast is burning, but if the O’Neals can reconcile, truly anything is possible.
He added the hashtags "#Reconciliation," "#Forgiveness," "#Wholeness," "#Love" and "#FAMILY."
Tatum, who starred opposite her father Ryan in 1973's "Paper Moon", was abandoned by her father at age 16, when he left her and brother Griffin to move in with girlfriend Farrah Fawcett. In her 2004 autobiography titled "A Paper Life", the 56-year-old actress detailed her estranged relationship with her dad. "I feel sad for him. He has to live with himself and that's probably harder," she wrote.
While Tatum had never met her father in 17 years, she and Ryan began to mend their relationship in 2009 with the help of her son Sean. Sean first reached out to Ryan a year before Farrah's death in June 2009. Tatum gave her father's phone number to Sean in fear that the actor would fall into isolation and depression.
Nine months before Farrah passed away, Tatum met her in person and the two talked for the first time in years. "I had never just sat with her alone," she told PEOPLE. "We laughed a lot. She seemed really grateful I was there and genuinely touched."
Crediting the late actress for her reconciliation with her father, Tatum said, "She brought us back together. God forbid something were to have happened to my dad. I don't know if I could have lived with myself."