You can’t save Ann-Margret down. She survived the ns of she beloved husband the 50 years, roger Smith, in 2017, and also she’s remaining busy at 78, having recently covering a duty in the big-screen comedy Never also Late opposite fellow legends Ellen Burstyn and also James Caan. “You’re no dead as soon as you with a particular age,” she says. “You have to keep living and not sit at home and watch TV alone. You have to participate.”




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That’s a work ethic Ann-Margret learned from she Swedish-immigrant parents. She involved the U.S. In ~ 4, not speaking a indigenous of English, and also learned not just the language however solid values. “My mom was the strongest human I ever knew,” she says. “I always went come Sunday school and sang in the choir.”


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Roger took treatment of she personally and also professionally, helping her grow beyond her sex-kitten persona. “The critics had photo of me, and they wouldn’t accept any kind of other,” she says. “I to be a cartoon character.” (In fact, she detailed the voice the “Ann-Margrock” in The Flintstones.) But an overwhelming parts in provocative ’70s movies like Carnal Knowledge and Tommy adjusted all that, garnering her critical acclaim and attention from awards-show voters.

But she favorite duty in those year was as stepmother come Roger’s three youngsters from his very first marriage. “I met them as soon as they to be 3, 6, and 7,” she claims of stepdaughter Tracey, currently 62, and also stepsons Jordan, 61, and also Dallas, 57. She still near to all of them today and also says proudly, “Two that them room doctors.”




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Ann-Margret retained working steadily end the years, appearing in hits like the Grumpy Old Men movies through Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon and winning one Emmy because that a guest shoot on Law & Order: SVU in 2010. Yet she put her career on the ago burner because that years to care for roger while he combated myasthenia gravis and also Parkinson’s disease. “I retained saying no, no, no to everything since I was taking treatment of him,” she says. “If you’re a spouse, if one of you has a damaged wing, the various other takes over.”

Sadly, Roger passed away at 84 in 2017. “She absolutely mourned for roger but, much more than anything, she fondly recalled the life they do together,” the girlfriend says. “To her, a good love story doesn’t end with death. You bring their soul with you.”

That’s exactly what Ann-Margret is doing this days as she embraces gaining older. “I always think that age is a herbal progression, and I’m ready for it,” the recent Happy! guest star says. “Whatever! ns going to be the finest 85-year-old I have the right to be.”