Gene Wilder's Widow Reveals The Actor's Tragic Battle With Alzheimer's

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Gene Wilder, whose real name was Jerome Silberman, was one of the most iconic actors to grace the silver screen. Best known for his award-winning roles in Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory, Young Frankenstein, Stir Crazy and The Producers, Wilder left the acting world behind in 2003 to pursue his other passion: writing.

Despite all the success he's achieved, life wasn't a smooth ride for Wilder. After going through two failed marriages, he wed Saturday Night Live actress Gilda Radner in 1981. The couple were married for five years before Radner passed away from ovarian cancer.


Wilder himself faced some health struggles years later when he was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma. He underwent a stem cell transplant and chemotherapy to treat the disease, and remained in remission until his death from complications of Alzheimer's disease in 2016.

Now, nearly two years since the actor passed away, his widow, Karen, is opening up about her late husbands battle with the degenerative brain disease.

Karen wrote a powerful and emotional essay recounting both good and bad moments they shared as a couple, and the toll Alzheimer's often takes on caregivers, including spouses.

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