Following Kelly Preston's death after battling breast cancer, it's been noted that John Travolta's first love, Diana Hyland, also died of the same illness 43 years prior. Hyland was 41 years old at the time of her death and had been dating 23-year-old Travolta for about a year.
Travolta and Hyland met when she played his on-screen mother in The Boy in the Plastic Bubble. "I thought I was in love before — but I wasn’t," Travolta previously told PEOPLE. "From the moment I met her, I was attracted. We were like two maniacs talking all the time on the set of Bubble. After a month it became romantic." In 1977, Hyland was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent a mastectomy. However, despite the surgery, her prognosis worsened, according to the New York Post. Travolta was by Hyland's side when she died, and told PEOPLE that he "felt the breath go out of her."
"I picked out a house, and Diana and I were planning on moving in right after this movie," he added, clarifying that their romance was never just a fling for him. "If she was alive, it is very possible I would have married her." After Hyland's death, Travolta would go on to star in some massively iconic films, such as Grease and Staying Alive, before marrying Preston in 1991. The pair had three children together, including the late Jett Travolta. Jett died in 2009 after suffering a seizure and hitting his head on a bathtub in a hotel room while the family was vacationing in the Bahamas.
On Monday, Travolta revealed Preston's death, writing on Instagram: "It is with a very heavy heart that I inform you that my beautiful wife Kelly has lost her two-year battle with breast cancer. She fought a courageous fight with the love and support of so many. My family and I will forever be grateful to her doctors and nurses at MD Anderson Cancer Center, all the medical centers that have helped, as well as her many friends and loved ones who have been by her side. Kelly's love and life will always be remembered. I will be taking some time to be there for my children who have lost their mother, so forgive me in advance if you don't hear from us for a while. But please know that I will feel your outpouring of love in the weeks and months ahead as we heal. All my love."