The Dukes of Hazzard star John Schneider opened up about navigating his first Christmas following the heartbreaking loss of his beloved wife, Alicia Allain Schneider.
In an interview with Fox News Digital, the 63-year-old actor revealed that he plans to spend the holidays with his in-laws and Alicia’s daughter. This decision comes after the heartbreaking loss of his spouse, who tragically passed away from breast cancer at the age of 53 in February.
Even with the backing of his family, Schneider, the creator of John Schneider’s Revenuer’s Reserve Premium Moonshine, expressed that he expected Christmas to be a particularly difficult period.
The country star openly acknowledged that things are bound to be challenging.
He went on, stating, “Grief is a peculiar emotion. It has a way of catching you off guard and striking you unexpectedly. Just when you are enjoying a moment of happiness.”
John Schneider added
“It’s as if grief is determined to block any chance of finding joy or humor today.”
The idea that grief will completely vanish is foolish. Grief is a burden we must learn to bear, and I’m learning to do just that. It’s not a lesson or skill I ever desired, but I’m embracing it and making the most of it.
He has a daughter named Leah with his ex-wife Elvira “Elly” Castle, and he also adopted her three children from her previous marriage. Alicia had Jessica with her ex-husband Patrick Dollard.
Schneider informed Fox News Digital that he and Alicia’s parents will be joining Jessica and her husband Daniel Turner to celebrate Christmas at their residence in Nashville, Tennessee. He expressed their intention to commemorate Alicia’s memory during this gathering.
“We’ll dedicate all that time to being together, just as we would if Alicia were here,” he said. We’ll honor her. We’ll keenly feel her absence. But the struggle is immense. It’s extremely challenging.
Schneider exclaimed with enthusiasm, “Let us rejoice in the presence of an extraordinary, remarkable life, a powerful influence that has touched each one of us.”
The singer emphasized that celebrating Christmas with his in-laws and Jessica is a significant way for him to uphold the Christmas traditions he used to share with Alicia.
“Exciting news! Next year, we will be welcoming another addition to the family as Jessica, my stepdaughter, is expecting her first child with Turner. She is due in March,” he happily informed.
“I will always consider my extended family through Alicia as my own,” Schneider stated passionately. “We have been there for each other for the past eight or nine years, and I am determined to continue being a part of their lives and supporting them in whatever they do.”
Although Schneider acknowledged that it was still too early for him to determine which other traditions he would embrace in Alicia’s absence, he is steadfast in his efforts to deal with her absence.
“I would be dishonest if I claimed to have a well-defined plan since you’re not prepared,” he expressed. “You simply cannot be ready; it’s an impractical expectation. All you can do is stay committed and resilient.”
He continued, “I have discovered that offering assistance to others engaging in conversations with individuals who have undergone loss is an incredibly effective approach to enhancing one’s own resilience.” It’s an excellent method to regain control over oneself. Consequently, I make a conscious effort to partake in these activities as frequently as I can, and I wholeheartedly advocate for others to do the same.”
Schneider informed Fox News Digital that he had established a connection with Dee Dee Sorvino during a “very challenging year.” The late Paul Sorvino, known for his role in “Goodfellas” and as the father of Oscar winner Mira Sorvino, passed away in July 2022 at the age of 83.
The creator of the popular song “Country Girls” revealed that Sorvino, whom he encountered around four and a half months back, played a significant role in motivating him to develop Revenuer’s Reserve Premium Moonshine. Before Paul’s unfortunate passing, he and Sorvino established the renowned Sorvino Vino wine brand, which the Emmy Award-winning actress introduced to the market in March.
After meeting, Schneider remembered how Sorvino showed genuine concern for him as he was dealing with his grief, and she wisely recommended that he find a new project to concentrate on.
“He explained that Paul had been gone for about a year and a half, so she had been on this journey even longer than me,” he recounted. “She asked me, ‘What path do you wish to take?'”
Schneider revealed, “For some reason, I blurted out, ‘You know, I’ve always been curious about making moonshine,’ while she was promoting a wine event. And to my surprise, she responded, ‘Let’s make it happen. I know some people who can help.'”
After successfully navigating various challenges in the realm of alcohol distribution, I excitedly shared the concept of Revenuer’s Reserve with her. And as soon as she relayed this idea to someone else, their immediate reaction was nothing short of awe. They exclaimed, “Oh my God, this is absolutely the most brilliant alcohol branding we’ve ever encountered. Wow!”
In an interview with Fox News Digital, the actor shared that he, Sorvino, and their team discovered a remarkable distillery in Ripley, West Virginia, to craft the exquisite Revenuer’s Reserve. Notably, Schneider expressed his admiration for the swift launch of the brand into the market.
He stated that the expected timeframe for this achievement was six months to a year, but it was actually accomplished in just three months. This impressive accomplishment fills him with immense pride for the team and everyone involved. Furthermore, the feedback received regarding the moonshine has been exceptionally positive.
Schneider expressed his astonishment to Fox News Digital regarding the astounding success of Revenuer’s Reserve, a product that completely sold out on its very first day of release earlier this month.
“He said that we have already completed two production runs of 10,000 bottles each. Astonishingly, all 20,000 bottles were sold out in a mere three weeks! This rapid success is absolutely mind-blowing.”
“having to put their other projects on hold in order to keep up with the demand for John Schneider’s Revenuer’s Reserve.”Currently, Revenuer’s Reserve is offered in three delightful flavors: original, apple pie, and blackberry.
Schneider has exciting plans to introduce a new flavor next year, one that has always been a personal favorite dessert of his.
“And it looks like I’m finally off probation,” Schneider joked, referring to his “Dukes of Hazzard” character Beauregard. “BO
In the show, BO and his brother Luke, played by Tom Wopat, were sentenced to probation after being convicted for illegally transporting moonshine. Schneider starred on the mega-hit show for seven seasons from 1979 to 1985.
The actor from “Smallville” recalled being introduced to Sorvino by a mutual friend who was acquainted with both Paul and Alicia.
“One day, I got a message from him. He wrote, “I have some unfortunate news to tell you. Paul Sorvino has sadly passed away. His wife is a close friend of mine. In times of sadness, finding comfort in each other can give us strength. Both of you are intelligent people going through a tough period. Why not connect and talk?” And that’s exactly what we did,” Schneider fondly remembered.
He exclaimed, “It was amazing! We’ve been really close. She’s not one to cry, and I haven’t laughed in a long time.”
While creating Revenuer’s Reserve, Schneider mentioned that he and Sorvino provided support to one another during their grieving journeys.
“He mentioned that she has been able to shed a few tears. We have been discussing Paul and Alicia and sharing a few laughs. Remarkably, it appears that we have been able to create something truly meaningful, our moonshine venture.
He continued, “You see, God is always watching. Otherwise, she would have been sitting somewhere, feeling sad. I would have been sitting somewhere, not experiencing joy. And this marvelous creation would not exist.”
“It has been truly wonderful from every angle,” Schneider concluded.
In 1991, Alicia gained recognition as an esteemed producer and actress, notably for her remarkable performances in the films “Leather Jackets” and “Caged Fear.” Additionally, in 2002, she displayed her multifaceted talent both in front of and behind the camera as she produced and acted in “Auto Focus.” The fateful encounter between Alicia and Schneider occurred in 2014 when she approached the actor with an intriguing proposal for a collaborative endeavor.
In 2015, they embarked on a romantic journey that would not only foster their love but also their passion for indie filmmaking and songwriting. Alicia, not only the founder of Maven Entertainment, took on the role of Schneider’s manager before their beautiful union in 2019.
Despite her four-year battle with cancer, Schneider and Alicia persevered, collaborating on multiple film and music projects. Their unwavering determination and creative synergy resulted in the compelling release of the stirring and patriotic film “To Die For” in October 2022.
Alicia received the devastating news of her stage 4 HER2-negative cancer diagnosis back in 2019, after a lesion was discovered during a regular visit to the dermatologist. However, there is a glimmer of hope in Alicia’s story as Schneider recently unveiled that her cancer has miraculously gone into remission in 2020.
In 2021, it was revealed that Alicia’s cancer had recurred and spread to the bone. She was moved from the hospital to hospice care in February, and Schneider later announced on Facebook that she had passed away, surrounded by her family at their home in Louisiana.
Back in July, the talented “Stay” singer made an emotional revelation about his upcoming project, an album dedicated to paying homage to Alicia. This announcement took place during his highly anticipated first public appearance following her tragic passing.
Fast-forward to November and the wait was over, as he finally launched the heartfelt tribute album titled “We’re Still Us.” Not only that, but Schneider also shared a captivating book called “In the Driver’s Seat: Love, Loss & Living with No Regrets,” a collaborative effort with Alicia that offers a profound insight into their journey together.
The book chronicles the couple’s journey through Alicia’s battle with cancer and features her valuable insights on being an active and empowered patient.
Schneider stated that the resource is extremely beneficial for those who have been diagnosed with cancer, as well as for their loved ones. It is also surprisingly healing for individuals who have lost someone to the disease.
Furthermore, Schmidt is taking the lead role in the captivating new Christmas comedy “Jingle Smells”, a delightful film suitable for the whole family. This heartwarming holiday movie, executive-produced by esteemed personalities Sean Hannity from FOX News Channel and Logan Sekulow, has been released on Nov. 23 exclusively on Rumble. Joining Schmidt in this star-studded cast are Eric Roberts, Ben Davies, Brad Stine, Jim Breuer, Victoria Jackson, and Dylan Postl.
Schneider mentioned that individuals are thrilled to once again have the chance to sit, watch, and relish a movie together with their entire family. Unfortunately, these kinds of opportunities are now scarce.
“He continued, “The holiday classic ‘Jingle Smells’ is in fact one of those. And I think it’s going to be around for years and years to come. It’s a very fun movie.”