At 87, Carol Burnett is preparing for a new challenge: becoming the legal guardian of Dylan, her 14-year-old grandson. The groundbreaking comedian has applied for guardianship while her daughter, Erin Hamilton, deals with substance abuse issues. "Due to addiction issues and other circumstances that my daughter, Erin, has been struggling with impacting her immediate family dynamic, my husband and I have petitioned the court to be appointed legal guardian of my 14-year-old grandson," Burnett said in a statement to People. In court papers, Burnett said her 52-year-old daughter has long suffered from "severe substance abuse and addiction issues." She said Erin has been institutionalized eight times in the last 19 years and attempted suicide last month.
She said Dylan's father, Kurt West, recently checked into a rehab center and is also unable to care for the teen. Burnett has applied for guardianship along with husband Brian Miller, who is 23 years her junior. She says the arrangement will be for "oversight purposes concerning his health, education, and welfare and not intended to deny him nor the parents proper visitation with one another." Burnett has dealt with family addiction issues before. Both her parents were alcoholics who died in their 40s, and another daughter, Carrie Hamilton, was a heavy drug user in her teens. But Burnett says Carrie was sober by 18, and they had "a good 20 years" before she died of cancer in 2002, aged 38. "You never get over it, but I've learned to cope," she told CBS in 2013. "You have no other choice." (Read more Carol Burnett stories.)