Don Rickles’ Widow, Barbara, Dies at 84 on Would-Be 56th Anniversary

by Joe Rutland
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Barbara Rickles, widow of comedian Don Rickles, has died. Barbara Rickles passed away on what would have been their 56th wedding anniversary.

Rickles died in Century City, Calif., on Sunday from complications of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. She was 84, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Don Rickles died in April 2017 at 90 years old from kidney failure.

For decades, Don Rickles made jokes about his wife all the time. He wrote in “Rickles’ Book,” a 2007 memoir, that “she never complained” about being part of his act.

Don Rickles Made Fun Of Barbara Rickles In Act

“I’d say, ‘When we get home from a dinner party, she takes off her diamond ring, stands by the window and signals ships — and there’s no water in sight,'” Rickles wrote. “I’d talk about her like she was a shopaholic. If I could get a laugh out of painting her as a spoiled princess, I did it. Of course, none of that was true.”

Barbara and Don had a lifelong friendship with another famous comedian, Bob Newhart, and his wife Virginia.

Don married the former Barbara Sklar on March 15, 1965, in Philadelphia, Pa. They wed when Don was 38 years old and had two children, Mindy and Larry. Larry Rickles died in 2011 of respiratory failure after a bout of pneumonia at age 41.

Larry produced a documentary for HBO called “Mr. Warmth: The Don Rickles Project.”

Don Rickles’ Last Tweet Dedicated To Barbara

How much did Don love Barbara? In his last tweet on March 11, 2017, he wrote this out to his wife.

It’s rather ironic, if you want to call it that, to see Barbara Rickles die on their anniversary. The Rickles’ marriage is one for the entertainment history books. Don made the jokes, yes, but he truly loved his Barbara.

Now they are back together again. May their memory be a sweet one for fans of Rickles and his beloved wife.

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