At 57, Bob Ross’s Son Finally Reveals The Sad Truth About Him

For decades, Bob Ross has been an iconic figure known for his soothing voice, positive demeanor, and signature afro as he brought landscapes to life on his beloved TV show, The Joy of Painting. However, despite the calm and cheerful facade he presented to millions of viewers, his son, Steve Ross, has recently shed light on the more somber aspects of his father’s life.

A Complex Legacy

Now 57, Steve Ross has opened up about the struggles his father faced behind the scenes. Bob Ross’s life was not always as serene as the landscapes he painted. Steve reveals that his father dealt with numerous personal challenges that were often masked by his public persona.

Struggles with Health

One of the most heartbreaking revelations is about Bob Ross’s battle with health issues. Steve shared that his father was diagnosed with lymphoma in the early 1990s, a fact that was kept from the public for most of his life. Bob Ross continued to work tirelessly, creating new episodes of The Joy of Painting despite his illness. His dedication to his craft was unwavering, even as he faced a serious health battle.

The Pressure of Fame

Steve also spoke about the pressure his father felt due to his sudden rise to fame. Bob Ross became a cultural icon almost overnight, and with that fame came significant stress. The expectations placed on him were immense, and the pressure to maintain his upbeat, calming presence was a heavy burden. Steve revealed that his father often felt isolated and overwhelmed by the demands of his public image.

Personal Sacrifices

Bob Ross’s commitment to his show and fans came at a personal cost. Steve described how his father’s relentless work schedule left little time for family. Despite being a devoted father, Bob Ross struggled to balance his personal and professional life. Steve recalls periods where their relationship was strained due to his father’s demanding career.

Financial Struggles and Legal Battles

Another layer of complexity to Bob Ross’s life was the financial and legal battles he faced. After his death, it came to light that there were disputes over the rights to his name, likeness, and intellectual property. These legal battles added a layer of stress and conflict that overshadowed the serene image of the artist many fans held dear.

A Father’s Legacy

Despite the sad truths revealed by Steve Ross, he also emphasizes the positive aspects of his father’s legacy. Bob Ross brought joy and inspiration to millions, encouraging people to explore their creativity and find peace in painting. Steve highlights that his father’s passion for art and teaching left a lasting impact on countless lives, including his own.


Steve Ross’s revelations about his father remind us that behind every public figure lies a complex, multifaceted individual. Bob Ross’s life was filled with challenges and struggles that he kept hidden from his adoring fans. As we continue to cherish his contributions to the world of art, it’s important to acknowledge the full spectrum of his experiences. Bob Ross’s legacy is not just about happy little trees but also about the strength and resilience he showed in the face of adversity.

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