Who was Margie Willett? All About Dick Van Dyke’s Ex-Wife

Margie Willett, once married to the acclaimed actor and comedian Dick Van Dyke, maintained a low profile throughout her life, despite her connection to a household name. While Van Dyke’s illustrious career in entertainment garnered widespread recognition, Willett chose to stay out of the public eye, leading a private life. Nonetheless, her role in Van Dyke’s personal and professional journey remains significant. Although their marriage eventually ended in divorce, Willett’s influence on Van Dyke’s life and career is undeniable, marking her as a vital part of his story.

Who Is Margie Willett?

Margie Willett, born on January 30, 1926, in Danville, Illinois, led a life largely away from the public eye, despite her marriage to the famous entertainer Dick Van Dyke. After meeting in 1948, they married in 1949 and went on to have four children: Christian, Barry, Stacy, and Carrie Beth. Margie was a steadfast supporter of Van Dyke’s burgeoning career, including his iconic role in “The Dick Van Dyke Show.” Their marriage, lasting 35 years, faced numerous challenges, such as Van Dyke’s battle with alcoholism, yet they persevered until their divorce in 1984.

Margie Willett Biography

Margie Willett, born in 1927 in Danville, Illinois, gained public attention through her marriage to the celebrated actor Dick Van Dyke. Van Dyke is renowned for his performances in timeless films and television series such as “Mary Poppins Returns” and “Diagnosis Murder: Town Without Pity.” Their marriage placed Willett in the spotlight, connecting her to Van Dyke’s illustrious career in the entertainment industry.

Margie Willett Profile Summary

Facts Information
Full Real NameMargie Willett
Popular forHer Husband Legendary American Actor Dick Van Dyke
Zodiac SignNot Known
Net worthNot Known
UniversityState University
School NameLocal High School
Age (as of 2022)81 years old.
ProfessionPublic Figure
Date of BirthIn 1927
Place of BirthDanville, Illinois, the US
Current ResidenceAmerica

Margie Willett Early Life

Margie Willett was born in 1927 in Danville, Illinois, a quaint Midwestern town that epitomized small-town American life. Details about her family and education remain scarce, highlighting her preference for a private life away from the public eye. Margie’s formative years were spent in the simplicity and tranquility of Illinois, a stark contrast to the glamorous and bustling world of Hollywood that she would later encounter through her marriage to actor Dick Van Dyke. Her journey from a modest upbringing to the heart of the entertainment industry underscores the significant changes and challenges she faced throughout her life.

How Old Was Margie Willett?

Margie Willett was born on January 30, 1926, and lived a full life until her passing on March 8, 2008, at the age of 81. Her life spanned over eight decades, during which she experienced both the quiet of her early years in Danville, Illinois, and the public scrutiny that came with being married to a famous actor. Despite the challenges, Margie maintained a relatively private life, even as she found herself connected to the world of Hollywood through her marriage to Dick Van Dyke. Her journey reflects a life lived with grace and resilience, bridging the gap between an ordinary upbringing and the extraordinary experiences that followed.

Body Measurement

Hair ColorBlack and Grey
Hair LengthShort
Eye ColorBrown
Height (approx.)In Feet Inches: 5′ 4″In Meters: 1.64 mIn Centimetres: 164 cm
Weight (approx.)In Kilograms: 55 kgIn Pounds: 121 lbs.
Distinctive FeaturesWrinkles on Face
PiercingYes In ears
Body MeasurementsBreast-34, Waist-32, Hips-36
Plastic SurgeryNo.
Shoe Size6 US (5 UK).

Margie Willett Family

Margie and Robin Williams welcomed two children into their family: Zachary “Zak” Pym, born in 1983, and Zelda Rae, born in 1989. Margie was a dedicated mother, committed to providing a nurturing and stable upbringing for her children, despite the challenges of living in the shadow of their father’s fame. She focused on instilling strong values and encouraging Zak and Zelda to follow their passions with dedication and enthusiasm. Her deep love for her children was evident in the warm and supportive home she created, making her role as a mother the cornerstone of her life. Margie’s efforts ensured that her family remained grounded and close-knit, a testament to her unwavering devotion.

How Did Margie Willett Become Famous?

Margie and Dick Van Dyke’s love story began in Danville, Illinois, USA, where they first met. Dick, then 20 years old, started dating Margie, and their relationship blossomed over the years. In 1948, they decided to tie the knot on a radio show called Bride and Groom, where they exchanged vows in front of millions of listeners. Despite Dick’s rising fame in Hollywood, Margie preferred a simpler life away from the spotlight. While Dick’s career soared, Margie remained steadfastly private, keeping her personal life out of the media’s reach. However, their marriage faced challenges, ultimately ending in 1984 due to Dick’s affair with Michelle Triola Marvin. Despite the trials, Margie and Dick raised four children together: daughters Stacy and Carrie, as well as sons Barry and Jerry.

Margie Willett Career

Margie Willet was formerly married to Richard Wayne Van Dyke, a highly accomplished American actor and comedian whose career has spanned over seven decades across film, television, and stage. Throughout his illustrious journey, Van Dyke has amassed a plethora of awards and accolades, including a Golden Globe, Tony, Grammy, Daytime Emmy, and four Primetime Emmys, cementing his status as a celebrated figure in entertainment. In contrast, Margie’s professional endeavors remain largely undisclosed, as she has intentionally maintained a private persona, choosing to stay out of the public eye despite her connection to Van Dyke’s fame.

Relationship With Dick Van Dyke

Margie Willett and Dick Van Dyke’s love story began in 1947 against the backdrop of post-war optimism in their hometown of Danville. Their swift romance culminated in a unique wedding on the “Bride and Groom” radio program in 1948, where their vows were broadcast to millions. Over 36 years, they navigated life together, raising four children amidst Dick’s meteoric rise from radio comedian to television icon. Despite the challenges of fame and Van Dyke’s admitted infidelity in the 1970s, Margie remained a steadfast support at home. Following their divorce in 1984, Margie chose to retreat from the public eye, valuing her privacy and focusing on a life beyond Hollywood’s spotlight.

Margie Willett Children

Margie and Dick Van Dyke were blessed with four children: Christian, Barry, Stacy, and Carrie Beth. Amidst life’s trials, their family thrived, brimming with moments of happiness and unity.

How Many Times Has Dick Van Dyke Been Married?

Dick Van Dyke had relationships with three notable women, though he only married two of them. Following his divorce from his first wife, he remained unmarried for a period. His relationship with Michelle Triola Marvin began in 2006 when they first met; she was actively working as an actress at the time. Despite their 35 years together, they never formalized their union with a wedding ceremony, and discussions about setting a date remained inconclusive. Tragically, Michelle Triola Marvin passed away in 2009 after battling lung cancer.

Margie Willett Death & Legacy

Margie Willett’s passing in 2008 at the age of 81, due to pancreatic cancer, left a profound void in the lives of her family, including her former husband, who openly mourned her loss, acknowledging that a part of him had departed with her. Despite the challenges she faced, her legacy endures through her children and over ten grandchildren, who continue to honor and cherish her memory.

Margie’s life story epitomizes quiet resilience and grace. While her role as the spouse of a renowned entertainer often kept her in the shadows, she was the cornerstone of her family’s existence. Her journey mirrors that of many women of her era, who navigated the complexities of managing households and providing unwavering support to their loved ones amidst personal and public adversities.

Margie Willett Net Worth

Margie Willet, a successful businesswoman, had accumulated an estimated net worth of $1 million by the time of her passing. However, her wealth paled in comparison to that of her ex-husband, a renowned music and fashion icon, whose net worth was estimated at $50 million. This glaring contrast underscores the persistent gender pay gap and the unequal distribution of wealth between men and women in society.

Final Thoughts

Margie Willett’s life, though often eclipsed by her husband’s fame, exemplified resilience and unwavering dedication to her family. Remembered fondly as a nurturing mother and steadfast wife, her journey sheds light on the challenges faced by those married to public figures, including the personal tolls and sacrifices endured behind the scenes. Her enduring legacy, marked by integrity and quiet fortitude, continues to inspire those who cherish her memory.

Interesting Facts

  • Public Wedding: Margie and Dick Van Dyke married on the “Bride and Groom” radio show in 1948, with the show covering their wedding expenses.
  • Privacy Maintained: Despite being married to a famous entertainer, Margie chose a private life, staying out of the spotlight.
  • Supportive Partner: Margie supported Dick Van Dyke’s career, standing by him during his rise to fame with “The Dick Van Dyke Show.”
  • Challenges Faced: Their 35-year marriage endured challenges like Van Dyke’s battle with alcoholism and infidelity.
  • Mother of Four: Margie and Dick had four children: Christian, Barry, Stacy, and Carrie Beth.
  • Personal Tragedy: Margie suffered the loss of twins through miscarriage, which deeply impacted her.
  • Divorce: The couple divorced in 1984 after Van Dyke’s affair with Michelle Triola Marvin.
  • Quiet Life Post-Divorce: After their divorce, Margie chose privacy and lived away from public attention.
  • Legacy: Margie Willett’s legacy includes kindness, generosity, and a profound impact on her family.
  • Remembered Fondly: Despite their divorce, Dick Van Dyke publicly expressed sorrow at her passing, recognizing her significant role in his life.

FAQs About Margie Willett

Q: Who was Margie Willett?

A: Margie Willett was the first wife of renowned actor and comedian Dick Van Dyke. Despite her husband’s fame, she preferred a private life.

Q: When and where was Margie Willett born?

A: Margie Willett was born on January 30, 1926, in Danville, Illinois.

Q: When did Margie Willett and Dick Van Dyke get married?

A: They got married on February 12, 1948, during the “Bride and Groom” radio show.

Q: How many children did Margie Willett and Dick Van Dyke have?

A: They had four children: Christian, Barry, Stacy, and Carrie Beth.

Q: Did Margie Willett work in the entertainment industry?

A: No, Margie Willett did not work in the entertainment industry and preferred to stay out of the public eye.

Q: How did Margie Willett handle fame?

A: Margie Willett maintained a low profile and led a private life, choosing to avoid the spotlight despite her husband’s fame.

Q: When did Margie Willett pass away?

A: Margie Willett passed away on March 8, 2008, at the age of 81 from pancreatic cancer.


Margie Willett’s life was a testament to quiet strength and steadfast support, woven into her marriage to the legendary Dick Van Dyke. Born in Danville, Illinois, she opted for a private existence, despite her husband’s widespread fame. Over their 35-year marriage, Margie exemplified dedication as a wife and mother to their four children, navigating challenges including Van Dyke’s struggles with alcoholism and infidelity, culminating in their 1984 divorce. Margie’s legacy shines through her kindness, generosity, and profound impact on her family. Her choice to remain out of the limelight, coupled with her unwavering support for Van Dyke’s career, underscores her significant yet understated role in his success. Margie Willett’s passing from pancreatic cancer in 2008 left behind a cherished memory of personal integrity and quiet strength among those who knew her.

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