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Ryan O'Neal reunites with Tatum and grandkids 'after so many years of hardship'

A rare photo of an O'Neal family reunion had one family member saying that "if the O’Neals can reconcile, truly anything is possible."
/ Source: TODAY

Sean McEnroe calls it "one of the most memorable photos" of his life, and it took 17 years for the O'Neal family to make it happen.

Ryan O'Neal, 79, his daughter, Tatum O'Neal, 56, and her children, including McEnroe, have gathered together for the first time since 2003 after decades of public spats, reconciliations and estrangement.

McEnroe, 32, who is one of Tatum O'Neal's three children with ex-husband and tennis legend John McEnroe, posted the rare family photo on Instagram Sunday with a message of gratitude.

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"This is one of the most memorable photos of my life," he wrote. "The last time we were all together was at the 30-year Paper Moon Anniversary in 2003. I could cry tears of gratitude that everyone in this photo is still alive and that we were all able to come together again after so many years of hardship. The entire West Coast is burning, but if the O’Neals can reconcile, truly anything is possible 🙏🏻☺️💛#Reconciliation #Forgiveness #Wholeness #Love #FAMILY"

The picture also includes McEnroe's siblings, Kevin, 34, and Emily, 29, with their mother and grandfather.

Ryan O'Neal holds Tatum O'Neal in a scene from the film "Paper Moon," in 1973.
Ryan O'Neal holds Tatum O'Neal in a scene from the film "Paper Moon," in 1973.Getty Images

Ryan O'Neal and Tatum have had a famously turbulent relationship over the years after starring together in the 1973 movie "Paper Moon." Tatum O'Neal became the youngest Oscar winner in history at 10 when she won best supporting actress for the film.

Ryan O'Neal acknowledged his shortcomings as a parent on TODAY in 2012 and also said there "was violence at times" in his relationship with the late Farrah Fawcett. Three of O'Neal's children, including Tatum, have experienced addiction issues.

However, the tension has thawed in recent years. In an appearance on TODAY in 2018, Tatum said that if her father was watching, she wanted him to know she has always loved him and that "forgiveness is the best policy."

The father and daughter had been estranged for 20 years before starting to repair their relationship in 2009 when Fawcett was dying from cancer. The two met for lunch with Sean McEnroe along for support.

"He told me he’s sorry," Tatum told People in 2010. "He’s all I have in terms of family, and I needed him in my life. My dad was absolutely everything to me."