"We lost our girl," her mother, Helen McCole Bartusiak, told CNN. Investigators have not determined a cause of death, but Bartusiak has been suffering from epileptic seizures in recent days, according to her mother.
"She was a kind and really beautiful girl," her mother said.
Her most well-known role was in 2000's The Patriot, but Bartusiak appeared in several other films as a child actor including 1999's The Cider House Rules and 2001's Don't Say a Word opposite Michael Douglas. She also appeared on TV with roles in 24, Lost, House M.D. and CSI.
Most recently, Bartusiak had been preparing to produce and direct her first feature film, her mother said.