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Farrah Fawcett's companion, children visit her grave a year later

By Alan Duke, CNN
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Fawcett family marks somber anniversary
  • Redmond O'Neal spoke to CNN after first visit to mom's grave
  • Farrah Fawcett's son got pass from rehab for death anniversary
  • Ryan O'Neal: Son's doing 'extremely well' in drug rehab
  • Farrah Fawcett Foundation funds cancer research

Los Angeles, California (CNN) -- Farrah Fawcett's son, Redmond O'Neal, visited his mother's grave for the first time Friday, the anniversary of the actress's death.

"It was very nice, very beautifully set up," he said, sitting on a couch between his father, Ryan O'Neal, and sister, Tatum O'Neal. "I'm just happy that I'm able to be there for her and let her know I'm doing all right."

Redmond O'Neal was on a day pass away from the Pasadena, California, sober living facility where he is undergoing court-ordered drug rehab.

The three O'Neals were near tears as they spoke exclusively to CNN during a private gathering of friends and family at the Beverly Hills, California, headquarters of the Farrah Fawcett Foundation.

"Redmond is extremely well," Ryan O'Neal said. "He is recovering from a terrible disease. He seems to have cured himself. We are thrilled about that. And that's why he's here, because they let him."

"To show my face and let everybody know that I'm doing good, you know," Redmond O'Neal said. "You can't hide forever."

"And how handsome he is and how much he looks like Farrah," Tatum O'Neal said. "And how proud she would be and how lucky I am that I can at least be here, because he's so awesome. Oh, I'm going to cry."

The foundation has a mission of funding research and clinical trials into alternative treatments for anal cancer -- which killed Fawcett -- and pediatric cancers.

"We're trying to show that she hasn't left, that her name is still alive and that maybe there will be something good that comes from this," said Ryan O'Neal, her longtime companion.

Fawcett allowed the world to watch her die. A documentary, based on video shot mostly by her close friend Alana Stewart, was broadcast the month before her death.

"She took it all public, didn't she?" Tatum O'Neal said. "So that we could all see, so that a person who is going through cancer doesn't have to go through that alone. So that you don't have to feel like you're stuck in the middle of a small town and you've got cancer and it's beating away at you. You can say 'Oh, my goodness, this woman gave her own life to show us that we can fight it and do it and hopefully they're going to find a cure.'"

"Well put, Tatum," her father said.

With his mother now a role model and inspiration for those battling cancer, does Redmond O'Neal think he may someday be a hero and example for others struggle with drug addiction?

"I don't know about a hero, but just hopefully showing others that it can be done."

"He's living proof," his father said.

"He can go through all of that hardship and it can help someone else, and that's the beauty of our recovery in the 12 steps and all that," his sister said. "It's really about that."

"It's not impossible and he is the proof of it, because look at him," said Tatum, who has also struggled with drug abuse. "And look at me."

"And look at me," their father said.

"And look at you," Tatum said. "Don't look at me."

"Don't look at me," their father said, as the interview that started with tears ended in loud laughter.