In a tearful address on The Nick Cannon Show, Nick Cannon announced that his youngest son has died from brain cancer. Zen Scott Cannon was five months old.
In his emotional monologue, Cannon revealed for the first time that his son had been diagnosed a few months earlier, after he noticed that Zen appeared to have a “sinus thing” and “interesting breathing.” He added that his son’s head also appeared slightly large, but he thought it was just the “Cannon head” the actor says he passed down to all of his children. “We didn’t think anything about it, he had a normal Cannon head! But I really wanted to take him to the doctor to check out the breathing,” he continued.
What he and Zen’s mother, Alyssa Scott, hoped would be a simple checkup ended with Zen in surgery after doctors found that he had fluid buildup in his head. “His head was starting to get big. When we found out it was more, they called it a malignant tumor in his head,” Cannon said. “Immediately, we had to have surgery. Brain surgery.” After the surgery, Cannon made sure to give his kids time together. He showed a photo on his show of the twins he shares with ex Mariah Carey, Roc and Roe, and another one of his young sons visiting Zen. “I just got an opportunity to try to spend as much time, and I really just want to say I’m so grateful to my entire family for coming together during this time and being so loving, and not judgmental of me or any of those things,” he said. (Cannon famously welcomed four children in one year with three different women.)
Unfortunately, Zen’s tumor kept growing, and, around Thanksgiving, things took a “turn.” And on December 5, the comedian, Scott, and Zen spent a day at the beach together for one last family outing where Cannon got to hold his son “for the last time.”
Cannon also gave a specific call out to Scott in his address. “Alyssa was just the strongest woman I have ever seen,” he said. “She was emotional when she needed to be, but was always the best mom and continued to be the best mom possible.”
Scott has not yet commented publicly, but she has been honoring her son on social media, sharing sweet videos of Zen in her Instagram stories.