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Dannielynn and Larry Birkhead appear in a still from Good Morning America. - Provided courtesy of ABC

Anna Nicole Smith's daughter asks about mom's death, Larry Birkhead says

06/18/2012 by Olivia Allin

Larry Birkhead made a heart-breaking visit to "Good Morning America" on Monday and said that Anna Nicole Smith's daughter Dannielynn asks about her mother's death.

Birkhead recently brought his daughter Dannielynn to the Bahamas, where her mother and half-brother Daniel Smith are buried. There, he was forced to answer difficult questions .

"And, you know she said, 'Why did mommy die?'" Birkhead said on an episode of "Good Morning America" which aired on June 18. "And I said, 'You know, they, doctors couldn't fix her. But if you're good... you'll get to see her someday.'"

Birkhead raises 5-year-old Dannielynn as a single father and said on the ABC morning show that he was ill-prepared for the media fascination with his daughter, who he brought to the Kentucky Derby in May.

"You know, it's weird when your child is five years old and trending... There's all these big stars that came and the next thing you know Dannielynn's picture is all over the place," Birkhead said.

The photographer said that his daughter often encourages him to move on and re-marry, suggesting that he wed pop star Lady Gaga. He said that his daughter also made a mother's day card but told Birkhead to give it to his "new wife."

"It's hard to move on in that way because you have this little 47-pound reminder of her mother walking around," he said. "And you have all these images that are still so much very alive that you have to deal with every day."

Birkhead knows his daughter will eventually learn about her mother's drug issues, but hopes he can help her see the positive things about her life.

"I hope that she understands that no one's perfect and people have triumphs and people have tragedies. And her mom really... soldiered on and she came from nothing and she, you know, lived her dream," Birkhead said. "I want to keep Anna's image alive in a positive way. She could light up a room. And now her daughter's taken her place and she's lighting up every room that she goes into, trust me, I feel it every day."

The former Playboy model and reality television star died at age 39 of an accidental prescription drug overdose in 2007. Smith was buried in the Bahamas in 2007 next to the grave of her son, Daniel, who had died a year earlier and days after the birth of her daughter, Dannielynn.

At the time of Nicole's death, she was in the middle of a 15-year legal battle over her late billionaire husband, J. Howard Marshall, a Texas oil baron's will. It was ruled in June 2011 that Smith's heirs were not entitled to part of the $1.6 billion fortune.

Birkhead had a relationship with Smith, but had to go to court with a DNA test to prove his paternity. Several other men also claimed to be Dannielynn's father.

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