Hugh Hefner’s son Cooper has officially become a father after welcoming his first child with actress wife Scarlett Byrne – a baby girl named Betsy Rose after the new dad’s late grandmother.
The 28-year-old California Senate hopeful shared the joyful news of the couple’s new arrival on Instagram, posting several images of their adorable family-of-three while gushing to his followers: ‘We are overwhelmed with gratitude, love, and joy!’
Cooper and Scarlett’s newborn weighed 6lbs 5oz, and the couple revealed that they named her in honor of the new dad’s late maternal grandmother, Betsy Aldridge Conrad, who passed away just last month.
‘My grandmother meant the world to both Scarlett and I,’ Hefner told E! News while speaking about the couple’s choice of name for their baby girl.
‘Scarlett and I are filled with such joy. We couldn’t be happier… We look forward to being home and spending time together as a family in the days and weeks ahead.’
In a touching photo shared by the proud father, Hefner is seen standing alongside his wife, who is lying in a hospital bed and cradling their newborn bundle of joy. A video posted alongside the images shows mom and dad sharing a sweet kiss while cuddling their baby girl.
The arrival of baby Betsy was no doubt a bittersweet milestone for the former Playboy CCO, whose famous father Hugh passed away, at age 91, in 2017 from sepsis brought on by an E. coli infection.
Hefner is the son of Hugh and his second wife, former Playmate of the Year Kimberly Conrad, whom he married in 1989, before the couple officially divorced in 2010 after separating in 1998.
Betsy is named for Conrad’s mother, who passed away less than a month ago, Hefner revealed in a touching Instagram tribute, describing her as ‘another mother’.
‘She was a mother, grandmother, sister, friend, and loved one,’ he wrote in the July 16 tribute.
‘For the grandchildren of our family she was our Mema. Mema was kindhearted, generous, and loving to all who knew and met her. Each of our lives more wonderful as a result of being blessed with her soul and spirit.
‘For me, Mema was another mother. The two of us shared a bond that filled my life with a joy and warmth that took me home no matter where I was in the world. How lucky we are to have been beneficiaries of her love. How lucky we are to carry her in our hearts each day moving forward.
‘Until we see you again, we love you, with all our hearts, our Mema, my Mema.’
Hefner’s announcement about the birth of his daughter was met with hundreds of comments from well-wishers – including father Hugh’s former girlfriend Kendra Wilkinson, who lived with the Playboy founder for five years between 2004 and 2009.
‘Congrats to you all. She’s beautiful. Welcome to the world Betsy!’ Kendra – who now has two children of her own – wrote.
Scarlett’s former Harry Potter co-star-turned-best friend Evanna Lynch, who played Luna Lovegood in the movie series, also shared some kind words with the new parents, commenting: ‘Oh my goodness she’s perfecccct!!! Congratulations!!!’
Another of Scarlett’s Harry Potter co-stars – Afshan Azad, who played Padma Patil – also congratulated the new mom and dad, writing: ‘I love you all so much!!!!!! So proud of you Scarlett!!! The most perfect baby, my little Betsy! (I’m still calling her [Rose]) Love you all so much, I can’t wait to meet her.’
Both Afshan and Evanna joined Scarlett for a virtual baby shower earlier this month, with the new mom hosted on Zoom on July 11.
At the time, Scarlett praised her friends and family around the world for coming together to celebrate their baby, sharing an image of the Zoom event on Instagram, while writing: ‘Yesterday we celebrated Baby Hefner with a virtual shower.
‘It was very special for Cooper and I to see our family and friends come together to show their love and support for our little girl. Our hearts are full of gratitude knowing our baby is already so loved by a wonderful community of people.’
Despite spending much of the last few months in lockdown amid the coronavirus pandemic, Hefner and his wife have still managed to make the most of their time together – both personally and professionally.
In July, Hefner, who wed Scarlett on November 4 in a civil ceremony in Los Angeles, four years after popping the question, announced his plans to run as a Democrat for the California Senate in the state’s 30th District, which includes LA.
‘I launched a California State Senate Campaign because it is time for more young leaders to focus on the future,’ he shared in his official announcement.
‘I am committed to building a safer and stronger California one that embodies growth, strength, and spirit,’ he continued on his website.
‘California and the United States face the greatest challenge of a generation and an uncertain future. Now more than ever, it is vital to have new leaders who will lift up our communities through dedicated public service and innovation, providing greater opportunities and prosperity for all.
‘This is why I’m running to represent California’s 30th State Senate District.’
Hefner’s political plans come after a several career changes that saw him leave his role as CCO of Playboy in order to launch his own digital media company – which was then put on hold when he enlisted in the US Air Force.
He completed his basic training at Lackland Air Force base in San Antonio, Texas, before returning home at the end of March amid the pandemic – where he had to quarantine for two months before being able to hug his wife, he revealed.
‘Packed and heading home soon,’ he shared on Instagram, while posting an image of himself sitting in his bedroom at the Air Force base.
‘My orders take me to California tomorrow morning. A lot of work to be done in the weeks ahead, however right now front of mind is my wife. I can’t wait to see her.
‘Hugs and more will be delayed as I will be self quarantining for two weeks as a precautionary measure for both her and our little one when I’m back in Los Angeles.’
Just a few weeks before he returned home, Scarlett officially announced the news of her pregnancy online, posting images of herself showing off her growing bump, while sharing her ‘joy’ at their happy news.
‘Cooper and I are delighted to share that we have a little one on the way,’ Scarlett wrote in the March 10 post.
‘Our hearts are filled with gratitude and joy, and the two of us can’t wait to meet the newest little Hefner.’