Carl Reiner’s death at age 98 has many fans reminiscing about his long marriage to Estelle Lebost Reiner. The writer and performer on scores of TV shows and movies won many Emmy Awards and a Grammy, but his long marriage to Estelle was one of the greatest achievements of his life.
Just two days before his death, one of Reiner’s final tweets was in tribute to his wife, who died 12 years ago.
“Nothing pleases me more than knowing that I have lived the best life possible by having met & marrying the gifted Estelle (Stella) Lebost—who partnered with me in bringing Rob, Annie & Lucas Reiner into to this needy & evolving world,” Reiner wrote in a Twitter post on June 27.
Carl And Estelle Were Married For Nearly 65 Years
Reiner wed Estelle on Christmas Eve in 1943 while he was on Army leave and she was working drafting blueprints for a defense contractor, according to The Los Angeles Times. They were married for 64 years until Estelle’s death at age 94 in 2008. Their three successful children all followed in their footsteps with careers in the arts.
In 2017, Reiner reflected on his long marriage as he admitted that life was never easy for him after his wife’s passing because he also lost his best friend. The creator of The Dick Van Dyke Show said he learned that he had to go on without the love of his life.
“Watching her go — and it took a year — was horrible,” Reiner told AARP. “Estelle was everything to me. We met when I was 20 and she was 28, and people said it wouldn’t last. Sixty-five years later: three kids, five grandchildren, the greatest life and friendship you can imagine.”
As for the secret to their marital success, Reiner once told Closer Weekly that it was his beloved wife who laid it all out “pretty clear.”
“Marry someone who can stand you at your worst,” he said.
Estelle Sometimes Worked With Her Husband
Movie fans may remember Estelle from her cameo in the couple’s son Rob’s 1989 movie When Harry Met Sally. Estelle delivered the iconic line, “I’ll have what she’s having” in Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal’s famous deli scene.
The Reiner matriarch also had small roles in several other movies, including her husband’s 1983 film The Man with Two Brains, and the 1980 movie Fatso, which was directed by her friend, the late Anne Bancroft. Estelle also began a career as a jazz singer at age 65. She recorded seven albums and performed in clubs in New York and Los Angeles.