Claudette Colbert - Personal Life

Personal Life

In 1928, Colbert married Norman Foster, an actor and director, who appeared with Colbert in the Broadway show The Barker. She and her first husband lived apart, never sharing a home together in Hollywood, supposedly because Colbert's mother disliked Foster and would not allow him into their home. Colbert and Foster divorced in 1935.

In December of that year, Colbert married Dr. Joel Pressman, a surgeon at UCLA. The marriage lasted 33 years, until Pressman's death of liver cancer in 1968.

Colbert had one brother, Charles (1898–1971), who used the surname Wendling and served as her agent and business manager for a time. He is credited with negotiating some of her more lucrative contracts in the late 1930s and early 1940s.

For years, Colbert divided her time between her apartment in Manhattan and her summer home in Speightstown, Barbados.

After suffering a series of strokes in 1993, she took up permanent residence at her home in Barbados, where she died on July 30, 1996, at age 92. Colbert is buried in the Parish of St. Peter Cemetery in Barbados.

Colbert's only surviving relative was a niece, Coco, her brother's daughter.

The bulk of Colbert's estate, estimated at $3.5 million, was left to a friend, Helen O'Hagan, a retired director of corporate relations at Saks Fifth Avenue, whom Colbert had met in 1961 on the set of the her last film. O'Hagan cared for Colbert following her 1993 strokes.

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