Ginnie Newhart, the longtime wife of comedian Bob Newhart, died Sunday at the age of 82, just three months after the couple celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary.
‘We lost our beloved Ginnie Quinn Newhart – Wife, Mother and Grandmother on April 23rd, 2023 after a long battle with illness,’ a statement on Newhart’s Twitter page on behalf of the family read Monday. ‘She was our rock and we miss her terribly.’
Family publicist Jerry Digney confirmed Ginnie’s death in a statement to People Monday. A private service will be held for Ginnie, according to Digney.
Bob, 93, told the outlet in 2019 how he was fixed up with his longtime love by late actor Buddy Hackett, who was a friend of both.
‘Buddy said, “I’ve got a girl for you,”‘ Bob said. ‘”She’s going with another guy, but I don’t think he’s right for her, so I’m going to fix you up on a blind date. You’ll meet her and you’ll date and you’ll get married. Then you’ll have kids and you’ll call one of the kids Buddy.” Which we did.’
The latest: Ginnie Newhart, the longtime wife of comedian Bob Newhart, died Sunday at the age of 82, just three months after the couple celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary. The longtime pair was snapped in March of 2014 in LA
The family confirmed the matriarch’s passing in a statement on social media Monday
The couple wound up exchanging vows the next year and would go on to have four children.
Bob, speaking with Parade last year, said that keeping things light and funny had been a driving factor in their six-decade union.
‘The marriages of comedians, no matter how stormy, seem to last a long time, and I attribute it to laughter,’ Bob told the publication. ‘No matter how intense the argument you’re having, you can find a line, and then you both look at each other and start laughing. It’s over, you know?
‘I think that sense of humor is very important to the longevity of a marriage.’
Ginnie expressed the same idea while speaking with PBS in 2005 about why marriage between funny people has its upside.
‘Comedians are just fun to be with,’ Ginnie said. ‘They seem to have longevity in their marriages.’
Bob chat with CBS Sunday Morning in 2020 about how supportive a spouse Ginnie had been throughout his career in show business.
‘She’d be in the dressing room,’ he said. ‘She’d say, “Something’s wrong with the sound system. I couldn’t hear anything.” I said, “Honey, nothing was wrong with the sound system. They didn’t laugh!”‘
The pair were seen at the Golden Globes in LA in 1983 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel
The couple was seen in May of 2013 in Las Vegas with the late Don Rickles and his late wife Barbara
The longtime couple was pictured in 2013 at the Emmy Awards in LA
In the piece, Ginnie noted how Bob was ‘terribly shy’ when he was not performing, and she wondered if his career would veer off path from show business.
‘I always thought that maybe he would go into teaching, or do something else,’ she said. ‘But then I realized that it was definitely in his blood and he was … starting to enjoy it. I knew that he was hooked.’
Ginnie, who was the daughter of character actor Bill Quinn, was the creative inspiration behind the dream idea that ended the comic’s CBS series Newhart in 1990.
In the sequence, Bob’s character Dick Loudon woke up in the identity of his character from the first The Bob Newhart Show, Bob Hartley.
Speaking with Yahoo Entertainment in May of 2020, Bob explained the creative ongoings that made for a memorable finale for the second show, which ran from 1982-1990.
‘Ginny knew I was unhappy with CBS,’ Bob said. ‘She told me, “You know what the final show should be? You wake up in bed with Suzie and you describe this dream you had about owning an inn in Vermont.”
‘I said, “Honey, that’s a great idea!” Suzanne was actually at the same party, and we told her about it when we saw her. She said, “I’ll be there in a New York minute.”‘
Bob added, ‘I gave the idea to the writers, and they filled out the rest.’
The couple was close friends with the late Don Rickles, who passed away in 2017, and his late wife Barbara, who died in 2021, as they often traveled with each other.
Ginnie is survived by Bob, their four children, and 10 grandchildren.
The duo was pictured at the 1985 Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills
Bob and Ginnie were pictured together in 2003 at Loews Astor Plaza in New York City
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