Ben Stiller remembered his dad Jerry Stiller over a week after he died at 92

By Ale Russian
May 21, 2020 10:39 AM


Ben Stiller is finding comfort in knowing his beloved parents are "connected" again.

Ben appeared on the Today show Thursday morning where he spoke about his dad Jerry, who died last week at 92. His death comes five years after wife Anne Meara died at 85 in 2015. The two were married for 62 years and had a successful comedy career together, just like their kids Ben, 54, and his sister Amy, 58.

Speaking about his parents, Ben shared a touching sentiment.

"They found each other and they were there for each other," Ben said of their love story. "Not to get too sappy, but I feel like they’re connected again."

"He grew up very poor. And to have the career that he had, I think he never stopped being amazed by it or appreciating it," Ben also said about his dad. "It really was a dream for him to be able to do it. And then to meet my mom. They connected and fell in love and were married for 62 years. They just had a beautiful relationship. So I think for him, this would have just been — I think he has a big smile somewhere."

Jerry Stiller, Anne Meara
Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara
| Credit: NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images

Jerry and Anne met in 1953, one year before their wedding. At the time, Jerry had graduated from Syracuse University with a degree in speech and drama, while Anne was working in summer stock (theaters that only present productions in the summer).

Soon enough, the pair teamed up professionally as the comedy duo Stiller & Meara on sketch shows throughout the 1960s, most notably, The Ed Sullivan Show.

But after also starring together in the Blue Nun commercials, the couple decided in the '70s that they did not want their respective careers to be determined by their marriage, and so they began pursuing independent gigs.

Anne Meara and Jerry Stiller
Anne Meara and Jerry Stiller
| Credit: Nancy R. Schiff/Getty Images

WATCH: Comedy Legend Jerry Stiller Dead at 92

"I love Anne, but if I had depended on her in my professional life, I would have lost her as a wife," Jerry previously told PEOPLE. "We felt like two guys.”

Recalled Meara, “I didn’t know where the act ended and our marriage began.”

They went on to find individual success, with both cultivating a career and their loving marriage. On May 23, 2015, the couple's love story came to an end when Meara died at age 85.

"I miss her," Jerry said in an interview later that year, according to Country Living. "There were no walls between us in any way. We both knew what the other was thinking even when we weren't listening."