Dannielynn Birkhead, the daughter of Larry Birkhead and model and actress Anna Nicole Smith, turned 16 on Wednesday. Dannielynn’s father sent her a heartfelt message on social media marking the occasion. He posted a collage of images from her childhood.
“Sixteen years ago my beautiful baby was born,” the proud father wrote. “That’s if you want to feel really old. Many people thought the odds were stacked against you, but maybe that was geared more towards me than you.” Dannielynn Birkhead is obviously the apple of her father’s eye. “Through tragedy, turmoil and a couple of baby tantrums-today you shine bright and are so accomplished,” Larry added.
The father continued speaking proudly about Dannielynn Birkhead’s bold personality. Understandbly, he believes she inherited from her mother. “When I told Dannielynn what a great baby she was when she born, she shot back in true Dannielynn style … ‘How do you know you weren’t even there?’ Ouch,” Birkhead remembers. “I told her ‘maybe not, but I have been there every day since I brought you home.’ It’s been a wild ride and Dannielynn has brought joy and laughter to my life.” Finally, Larry joked to his followers to stay off the roads now that his daughter is driving. He also assured Dannielynn that her mother is watching over her.
How Dannielynn Birkhead keeps her mother’s legacy alive
In 2007, at the age of 39, Anna Nicole Smith died from an accidental drug overdose. Dannielynn Birkhead was only 5 months old. In the wake of her tragic death, Larry has taken to social media to keep the actress’ memory alive.
Dannielynn’s mother, who listed her then-boyfriend Howard K. Stern as Dannielynn’s father on the birth certificate, left everything she had to her daughter when she died. Zsa Zsa Gabor’s ninth husband, among others, had claimed to be Dannielynn’s real father until a DNA test proved that it was Larry.
In February, Birkhead shared a heartbreaking tribute to Anna Nicole on the 15th anniversary of her death at age 39. On Instagram, he shared a black-and-white photo of him and Smith hugging one another. “Still remembering this one 15 years after her death. She was truly one of a kind. She struggled for love and acceptance,” Larry recalled. “She was truly one of a kind,” Larry wrote of Anna Nicole. “She struggled for love and acceptance. Just when she found a little piece of one or the other, life seemed to sabotage. Today, I remember your heart, your soul and your beauty, both inside and out.”
However, Larry was quick to point out that Smith’s legacy lived on in their daughter. “Your love is alive still to this day, in the form of a truly one of a kind teenager with her Mom’s smile, beauty and courage,” he wrote. Dannielynn Birkhead has also been carrying on her mother’s legacy by re-creating some of Smith’s classic looks. She’s expressed interest in pursuing a career in acting.