In the wake of Hugh Hefner’s death, Kendra Wilkinson, Hugh’s ex-girlfriend has broken her silence on the founder of Playboy’s death. 32-year-old Wilkinson was a Playboy model herself and starred on The Girls Next Door with Hefner, Holly Madison, and Bridget Marquardt for a total of six seasons from 2005 to 2010.
Wilkinson made a name for herself starting at 18-years-old. She moved out of Hefner’s house and moved in with her now husband Hank Baskett back in 2009. Despite the breakup, Wilkinson and Hefner have remained close friends. She has always regarded Hefner as ‘family’ and even called him ‘her angel.’
Hefner was 91-years-old when he passed away September 27, 2017. Wilkinson spoke to US Weekly and said, “Hef changed my life. He made me the person I am today. I couldn’t be more thankful for our friendship and time together. I will miss him so much but he will be in my heart forever.”
Earlier this year, Wilkinson posted a sweet birthday message to her ex-boyfriend on Instagram. The caption read, “Happy Birthday, Hef!! Thank you for EVERYTHING. People might not understand you but that’s because they’ve never had the chance to know about you like I do. I’ll celebrate you forever!!!”
Hefner’s son, 26-year-old Cooper, released a statement about his father’s death on Wednesday saying, “My father lived an exceptional and impactful life as a media and cultural pioneer and a leading voice being some of the most significant social and cultural movements of our time in advocating free speech, civil rights, and sexual freedom.”
His statement continued with, “He developed a lifestyle and ethos that lie at the heart of the Playboy brand, one of the most recognizable and enduring in history. He will be greatly missed by all, including his wife Crystal, my sister Christie and my brothers David and Martson and all of us at Playboy Enterprises.”
Hefner founded Playboy Magazine in Chicago the year of 1953.