Actress Skye McCole Bartusiak dead at 21

Child star Skye McCole Bartusiak, best known as the daughter of Mel Gibson in “The Patriot,” died Saturday at age 21.

The blond Bartusiak reportedly died in her sleep at her home in Texas, although the cause of death was unknown, according to Variety.

Bartusiak, a native of the Lone Star State, recently produced and appeared in a number of short movies.

After several high-profile roles on the big screen, she appeared on network television shows like “House,” “24” and “Lost.”

Her movie career included roles in “The Cider House Rules” with Charlize Theron and Tobey Maguire, and in “Don’t Say a Word” with Michael Douglas.

She was just 7 when picked to play Gibson’s daughter, Susan, in the hit movie about the American Revolutionary War.

Bartusiak always said the part opposite Gibson was her favorite.

The cast also included Heath Ledger, the charismatic young actor who died of a prescription drug overdose in 2008.