ENCINO — Alice R. Gobel, the widow of comedian George Gobel, has died.
Gobel died Monday of complications from heart surgery at Encino Hospital, her family said. She was 76.
High school sweethearts, the Gobels moved to California from Chicago in 1953, when George--a staple on the nation's nightclub circuit--was offered his own television show. They lived in Sherman Oaks before moving permanently to Encino in 1961.
"The George Gobel Show," which began airing in 1954, featured a character named Spooky Old Alice, who, as Gobel's wife and chief nemesis, provided a great deal of the show's humor. The real Alice was just the opposite, according to the Gobels' longtime publicist and friend, Sam Honigberg.
"She was a very private person who had no interest in show business," said Honigberg, who compared the Emmy-winning show to "Seinfeld" in terms of ratings and popularity.