Sylvester Stallone is urging people to respect the memory of his son Sage amid what he calls "questionable" reports surrounding his recent mysterious death.
Sage Moonblood Stallone, a filmmaker, was found dead in his Los Angeles apartment on Friday. He was 36. Investigators have completed an autopsy of his body but have not yet released information about what may have killed him.
"This is in reference to the speculation and questionable reporting surrounding the death of my son Sage," his father said in a statement obtained by OnTheRedCarpet.com on Monday, July 16. "Because when a parent loses a child, there is no greater pain."
"Therefore, I am imploring people to respect my wonderfully talented son's memory and feel compassion for his loving mother Sasha, because this agonizing loss will be felt for the rest of our lives," he said about his first wife and son's mother. "Sage was our first child and the center of our universe and I am humbly begging for all to have my son's memory and soul left in peace."
The actor also released a photo of himself with his son, taken by photographer Bruce Weber in 1991 (pictured below).
Several news outlets had reported that Sage may have been dead in the apartment for several days. His attorney told People magazine that Sage posted photos of himself on Facebook 17 hours before his body was found.
The lawyer had also denied reports that the cause of death was suicide, explaining that the younger Stallone intended to get married to his girlfriend "as early as next weekend" in Las Vegas and had also recently acquired a new film for his company, Grindhouse Releasing. The attorney also denied that his client was a drug user.
"Sage didn't even drink," he told People. "There was a report that his room was filled with liquor bottles. Actually, they were empty bottles of Dr. Brown's Cream Soda."
The LAPD had said shortly after his body was found that there were no signs of forced entry or any other criminal activity that would currently prompt a "criminal investigation."
Sylvester and his first wife also have a son named Seargeoh. The couple divorced in 1985. The actor also has three daughters with current wife Jennifer Flavin.
Sage Stallone appeared in his father's film "Rocky V" in 1990 as the son of Sylvester's famous character Rocky Balboa.
Sage went on to appear in other films like "Daylight," which also starred his father, "Chaos" and "Promises Written in Water." He also wrote and directed a 2006 short film called "Vic."