Last night on Larry King, ol' shoulder blades interviewed Howard K. Stern, Anna Nicole Smith's omnipresent friend and lawyer. Stern was present at the birth of Anna Nicole's daughter and, just two days later, the death of her son, Daniel. Cue overdramatic introduction:
KING: It's good to have him with us again, Howard K. Stern, Anna Nicole's close friend and attorney. He was in the hospital room where Anna Nicole found the lifeless body of her son Daniel on September 10th; was going to be with us previously but certainly was in no emotional shape himself to do that.
And then, after passing silent-but-deadly gas, King launched into exactly the sort of "hardball" interview we've come to expect, discussing with Stern the details of Daniel's death and revealing the father of the new baby. Transcript after the jump.
KING: What are the latest test results on the cause of death of Daniel?
STERN: We're still waiting. You know, we're still waiting to find out what the cause is. We got some initial toxicology reports from the Doctor's Hospital, which came out negative, except for a medication called Lexapro but we also now have an indication that there may have been other prescriptive medication in his system but we don't know, you know, if that would have contributed to his death or not.
KING: Now, Lexapro is an antidepressant, right?
STERN: Yes, I'm not too familiar with how medications work but, yes, it's an antidepressant.
KING: How is Anna Nicole feeling in the — you know, a lot of parents go through a lot of things when a child dies, including guilt. Is she feeling any of that this was my fault?
STERN: She's just, you know, she's struggling with her emotions. It's been very rough. You know, she said that she didn't want to trade out children, meaning she didn't want one to be born and another to die.
Daniel, you know, he was more than a son to her. They were great friends, best friends and, you know, Daniel was her rock. So, everything that she's gone through Daniel's been there with her. And, you know, honestly I don't know how we're going to get through this.
KING: What kind of kid was he?
STERN: Daniel was a great boy. I mean he was a really humble, just nice, polite, just a great, all around great guy, I mean fun. You know, he had so many opportunities and, you know, he chose not to go into modeling or acting and he could have and that's pretty rare for a kid his age.
But, you know, he saw what his mom has gone through in the media and he kind of didn't want to go through the same stuff. That's why it's sort of unfortunate the way that the media is speculating and throwing out all that nonsense about how Daniel may have died or didn't die.
KING: You have no doubt in your mind then that it was accidental?
STERN: There's just no way that Daniel would have taken his life, I mean he was so, so excited to come here and see his mom and be with his sister. You know, I talked to him on the car ride when I picked him up from the airport, and I just — I couldn't fathom that he would have done this intentionally. (inaudible) at this point...
KING: He came in how many days after — how many days after the birth, when did he come in?
STERN: She was born on the 7th and he came in the night of the 9th.
KING: And when was the last time, Howard, that you saw him?
STERN: I saw him right before I came out here for the second time, so I think I saw him, you know, I'm not sure. It was probably about a month before that.
KING: And how long — how soon before he died?
STERN: That's what I'm saying it was about a month before he died.
KING: A month.
STERN: Something like that.
KING: Where — take us — the day of his death take us through that step by step. Where were you? What happened?
STERN: Well I'd want to start with the night when I picked him up from the airport and I picked him up and, you know, he was very happy to be here and he kept saying that he just couldn't believe he had a baby sister and he couldn't wait to see his mom.
This was one of the longest times that they've ever been apart and he was coming out here to stay with us and to stay with his mom and go to school here, so he was really excited and he was telling me, you know, over and over about how he couldn't believe he had another blood relative because, you know, his mom is really his only family. And it was just, you know, it's hard for me to believe I'm here even talking about this because...
KING: All right, I understand Howard. When he was in, though, when he was in Anna's room where were you?
STERN: Well, when we, you know, we drove back to the hospital room.
We drove from the airport to the hospital and when we got there, you know, he saw his mom and he hugged his mom and he picked up his baby sister like he'd been around babies his whole life, even though I don't think he'd ever really been around babies.
And, you know, it was just, it was a great — it was like one of the best nights that I've ever remembered. I mean Anna was so content. She had, you know, her son and her new baby girl and I was there and it was great, you know.
KING: Did you then leave the room?
STERN: After a while. I mean I was there. There was actually another friend of the family was in the room for awhile. And, after he left, we talked about all being hungry. And over here in the Bahamas not too many things are open that late.
So I went out and I got some food and it was, you know, it was from like a — almost like a gas station, like a 7-Eleven type place but they have a little bit better food than 7-Eleven. So, I picked up food and then I came back and other than that I was there the whole time.
KING: You were there when he passed away?
STERN: I was there, yes, I was there. Anna woke me up. This was the next morning now. Stuff happened through the night where, you know, at first I was going to sleep on the floor in between the two beds.
There were two hospital beds and Anna was in the bed closest to the window and Daniel was in the bed closest to the door. And, Daniel at some point said to me that, you know, he wasn't really that tired, so why didn't I just take the bed and he was going to sit up and watch TV.
And, remember that Anna had had a C-section two days before, so she needed help and still needs help to get to the bathroom and things like that and Daniel, you know, helped her out to the bathroom and this happened many times throughout the night.
And then, at one point Daniel said to me how come I'm so tired? And, in hindsight I wish that I had seen that as some sort of a signal and seen that something wasn't right.
KING: So, what happened? Did he just like close — did he close his eyes or what?
STERN: Well, I mean the next thing that I remember that happened from my perspective is that in the morning Anna said, "Howard, Howard, Daniel's not breathing." So I, you know, went over there really quickly. And, at this point Daniel had moved into bed with his mom, so they were actually staying in the same bed.
And, I checked Daniel's neck and I didn't feel anything and we called, you know, the nurses and said it was an emergency. And then, medical staff just came rushing into the room and they tried to revive him and they tried to ask or tell Anna and myself to leave but she wasn't going to leave her baby.
And she, she stayed there and we were at the foot of the bed and she was hugging Daniel's leg and she was praying to Jesus and she was telling Jesus to take her and not take Daniel. And it was...
KING: All right, hold right on, Howard, we'll come right back; coming up more about the events leading to the death of Anna Nicole's only son.
Plus, who's the father of Anna Nicole's baby daughter? Howard will reveal the daddy's identity for the first time ever. That's ahead on LARRY KING LIVE.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Did you have a child at the time?
ANNA NICOLE SMITH: I had my son Daniel at the time.
KING: How old is he now?
SMITH: He's 16.
KING: The first time I talked with you I think he was eight or nine or ten?
SMITH: Yes, he was a baby back then.
KING: And you've raised him through all of these trials and tribulations that you've gone through?
SMITH: Yes, I have.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: We're back with Howard K. Stern.
Howard, did the hospital personnel react quickly enough to your thinking?
STERN: I don't find any fault in what the hospital did. You know, I don't know. When I felt his neck there wasn't a pulse and, you know, we just even after the hospital personnel tried to resuscitate Daniel we, Anna told me to, you know, there was an airbag that they were putting air in and she had me doing that and she was pumping on his chest. And I just, you know, I don't know. I'm not a doctor.
KING: Were you and Anna — is it true that you continued to try to revive him even after the doctors said he had passed away?
STERN: Yes, that's what I was just saying is that Anna just when they -
- when they stopped...
KING: No, that was after.
STERN: ...Anna — no when they stopped Anna screamed out "No, no!" And she just didn't want to believe that he had died and she didn't want, you know, she wanted to keep trying to save him and keep going. And she had me, you know, pumping the air into his mouth or down his throat and she was pushing on his chest trying to revive him.
KING: Any truth to that Tribune newspaper in Nassau which said that Anna Nicole screamed "You did this" screaming at you?
STERN: No, no that's just — that's nonsense and the way that this whole thing has been reported has been really irresponsibly.
KING: What was the biggest misconception?
STERN: Of how the media has reported it?
STERN: Oh, well, I mean, you name it. They said that there was blood and that there was vomit in the room, which is absolutely false. The way that Magistrate Virgil used words like "suspicious" and "not natural" when she's, you know, she's legally trained. She's not a doctor.
You know, people don't understand that the coroner here in the Bahamas is different than a coroner in the United States. The coroner in the United States is a doctor and actually would be the pathologist who does the autopsy and that's not the case in the Bahamas.
Just, you know, other — the way that she had said, you know, initially that there may or may not have been a third person in the room. It's up to the jury to decide and then followed that up with saying that she knows who the third person in the room was but, you know, didn't want to prejudice the investigation.
When I had been in the room the whole time, you know, from the time that Anna had given birth and all the hospital personnel knew that and, you know, all the authorities knew that. I was actually the person who gave the initial police statement.
KING: Howard, did they have to sedate her right after this?
STERN: Yes, they did. She refused to leave her son. She refused to leave her son. And, you know, the doctors advised us that we should probably check her out of the hospital because the media was going to be coming and it was going to be a, you know, make the whole situation even worse. So, she did have to be sedated in order to leave.
STERN: And she was sedated. She actually doesn't remember that night right now.
KING: Just ahead, tabloid reports that Anna Nicole's son was in intensive care in the days before his death. And, Howard will end all the speculation and tell us who is the father of Anna Nicole's baby girl.
That's all next. Don't go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SMITH: One really good thing about being a parent is your presents, yes. My son last night he brought me home a tee shirt that says "Anna Nicole"
and they painted it at the carnival. And he got a tattoo on his arm. And he wanted to put my name under it very small.
You know most parents would be like "Oh, my God you got a tattoo!" I was like, "Oh, that's so cool" but I'm not most parents. But I am a devoted and very caring mom. Plus, he's 20 so if you want to get a tattoo you're not hurting anybody.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: By the way, Howard Stern, before we get to the story of the baby girl, how are you doing? Have you — did you have to be sedated?
STERN: I wasn't sedated but it's been rough. It's been really rough.
KING: We have an e-mail question from Irene in South Plainfield, New Jersey who wants to know, "What did Anna Nicole name her new daughter?"
STERN: Her name is Danilynne is the first name and Hope is the middle name and where that comes from is that Daniel used to call Anna or his mom Mamma Lynne.
KING: So, the girl's name is Dani?
KING: Danilynne. Another e-mail from Karen in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, "Why has Anna Nicole been so secretive about who the father of her new daughter is?"
STERN: Well, I'm going to tell you that right now. Anna and I have been in a relationship and we love each other and it's been going on for a very long time and because of my relationship as her lawyer, we felt that it was best to keep everything hidden. And we've actually done a pretty good job of that.
KING: Sure have. So, you are the father?
STERN: Yes, sir.
KING: By the way, have there been an DNA tests taken?
STERN: Proud father.
STERN: I said proud father.
KING: Were DNA tests taken?
STERN: Well, based on the timing of when the baby was born there really is no doubt in either of our minds.
KING: Did Daniel know that you were the father?
STERN: He did. He did.
KING: Now, we have a tape of Larry Birkhead, a photojournalist when he was on Entertainment Tonight. I want you to watch this. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Were you told by a very reliable source?
LARRY BIRKHEAD: That it was mine?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
BIRKHEAD: The most reliable you can get. I'm not a bad person but I have to try to protect what I was told was mine. If someone wants to say to me "You are not the father of this baby," then I challenge them to come forward, come back to the states and we'll take a paternity test.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: He sent a statement to us, Howard. He said, "I've been told by Anna Nicole Smith that I'm the father of her newborn child. I have proof of it. I've attended multiple doctors' appointments, participated in the planning of this child up until a minor disagreement more than midway through the pregnancy.
In order to eliminate the back and forth claims regarding paternity, I am requesting that a DNA test take place in the U.S."
How do you respond to that?
STERN: Well, I think first you have to look at what his motives are and, you know, if he honestly believed that he was the father based on when the baby was born, he should have handled it appropriately.
You know, first he should have waited until when Daniel was put to rest. And, second, handle it through the proper channels, not through television and through the media. I mean for him to do that on Entertainment Tonight and, at the same time, send a slew of e-mails to Anna, it's just completely inappropriate.
Now, one thing I do want to mention is that, you know, Anna has had problems with people going to the media in the past about her and for that reason most people around her, myself included, have signed confidentiality clauses that we won't go to the media about her.
And, Larry did that and he actually in his own words has a liquidated damage clause for $10 million. And, you know, I'm surprised that he doesn't — I'm just very shocked at how he's handled this under the circumstances.
KING: How well do you know him?
STERN: Pretty well.
KING: Did he and Anna have a strong romantic relationship at one time?
STERN: She never considered him her boyfriend.
KING: To your knowledge were they ever intimate?
STERN: You know that's something I don't even want to get into when we're talking about Daniel's death. I just don't think this is the time for it.
KING: But does it give you concern that there might be a shot that the DNA might exclude you or is there no doubt that you're the father?
STERN: I think based on the timing of it that there shouldn't be a doubt.
KING: Does Anna Nicole know that you're coming forth tonight on this show to tell us?
STERN: Of course. We talked about it. Anna and I talked. You know we are here together. We've been in the house together the whole time since Daniel passed and she — I'm here because she wanted me to be here and I'm telling you this because she wanted me to.
KING: Are you going to get married?
STERN: It's funny that you say that because with everything that's gone on, I think we realize how much we mean to each other and I've loved her for quite some time and hopefully the feeling is mutual. And, we will. We will. At some point we will. You know right now we have to somehow get through what we're going through.
And, I'll tell you, our baby is the one ray of hope and it's the one thing that's really keeping her going and through it all, even with all the pain she has been a great mom, a very attentive mom and she's always by Danilynne's side.
KING: So, because of the little baby would you say the marriage is sooner rather than later?
STERN: Well, it probably would have been sooner, you know, but for Daniel's death and I just think we have to get through — we really haven't been allowed to grieve with the way that this whole thing has been handled.
And, you know, I — it's going to be I think a little while before, you know, we're going to be able to experience real happy moments.
KING: I can understand.