True love can live even in poverty, even in illness, and Ray Romano knows this very well.

    “Every Loves Raymond” actor Ray Romano is not just one of the greatest comedians of his generation but a wonderful husband to his wife, Anna Scarpulla, for more than 30 years. Their relationship has been tested repeatedly as they battled illness and financial troubles, but their great love stood strong, and they prove it to the world and their four children daily.

    Ray Romano might be known best for his famous sitcom, voicing a mammoth on the “Ice Age” franchise, and several serious roles like in Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman,” but his first job wasn’t as glamorous.

    Romano washed trailer trucks as a teenager to earn a little money. The actor explained on “The Ellen Show” that the trucks were so huge and parked so close together, so the washing boys had to fit close in between to wash them with long brushes.

    Actor Ray Romano and wife Anna attend the 51st Annual Primetime Emmy Awards on September 12, 1999 at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California. | Source: Getty Images

    The actor also told Ellen DeGeneres in another interview that he lived with his parents until he was 29, and their home in Queens only had one bathroom. He only moved away from his childhood home when he married Anna Scarpulla.

    Their love story started when they worked together as bank tellers, as they revealed on “Double Date with Marlo Thomas & Phil Donahue.” Scarpulla had started that job at 18, while Romano began at the age of 25. They were both young.

    The actor would say he wasn’t “the stud guy” at work because he rode his bike to work and was still living with his mother. Scarpulla said the other female bank tellers had been excited to meet the “new guy” at work, but Romano came in with his bike and was always 10 or 15 minutes late. Therefore, nothing happened until the actor quit his job two years later.

    That’s when he asked her out, but he tried to go out with some of the other tellers too. Unfortunately, the others said “no.” The host of the show asked why Romano still lived at home, wondering if it was an Italian custom.

    In Romano’s defense, Scarpulla said that almost everyone in their neighborhood stayed home until they married. Romano added that most of his friends did the same, but many married earlier, so it looked like they were more independent than him.

    The actor also revealed he was “nowhere” in his career then and had no idea what he wanted to do with his life through most of his twenties. After dropping out of college, he was in “nowhere land.” Luckily, he met Scarpulla when he started doing stand-up comedy.

    “She took a gamble,” Romano told the host on the show because she went out with a man who didn’t have a steady career and still rode a bike to work. “And now, she has her movie theater.”

    When the host asked Scarpulla why she took that gamble, she said things grew from a “friendship into a relationship.” She described Romano as “funny, kind, and sweet.”

    The couple initially took things casually without expectations, and everything flowed naturally. Describing their relationship, Romano quoted Sylvester Stallone’s “Rocky”:

    “She’s got gaps, I’ve got gaps, together we fill gaps.”

    Ray Romano & Anna Scarpulla during the 100th episdode party of "Everyone Loves Raymond" at Spago in Beverly Hills, California | Source: Getty Images

    Their first kiss happened after the actor took Scarpulla home to her mother’s house, and they “made out” in the car. When they finished, Scarpulla saw Romano looking straight out of the windshield because he couldn’t look at her. She commented:

    “It was so awkward. The afterwards was awkward.”

    Scarpulla added that she didn’t care what he did for work. She could’ve been a bank teller her entire life while he did stand up. There was no ambition from her or thought about finding someone richer. The actor added:

    “I’ve always said this: ‘She would be happy if I was a plumber if a plumber made the same amount of money that I did.’”

    Romano had just been in stand-up for around two years and working with a friend who owned a futon mattress store. He dated Scarpulla for two years before they tied the knot in 1987. Romano recalled an episode where he got jealous and decided they had to marry.

    Ray Romano (M) with wife Anna Scarpulla, daugther Alexandra, and twins Matthew and Gregory in 2004 | Source: Getty Images

    They moved in together, and Romano called their first night at the new house “traumatic.” He explained that it was a “crucial day” because of the choices you have to make, such as picking a side of the bed to sleep in. He explained:

    “You think that’s trivial. But that’s your side for life. And I blew it. I didn’t look at the TV angle. You know, you have to make the right choice ‘cuz I have a big toe in the middle of the screen for the rest of my life now” [sic].

    Fortunately, those were inconsequential things that didn’t matter much in the end as their relationship grew stronger. They had four children and were together through rags and riches, which is more than most people can imagine.

    Romano found huge fame in Hollywood but remained humble for a good reason—a quote from the bible his brother Richard had given him: “For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?”

    The comedian explained that his brother hoped he would have good luck in Hollywood but that fame and money wouldn’t swallow him up or make him lose his way. Thus, Romano has not lost sight of where he came from or who he is.

    Since becoming famous, Roman left the rearing of their four kids—Alexandra, twins Gregory and Matthew, and Joseph— to Scarpulla, who stayed home with them. She was the one “holding the fort,” and they had a ton of trust in each other.

    While Romano was the Hollywood star, Scarpulla was the stay-at-home mom. When the actor had to move to Los Angeles to film “Everyone Loves Raymond,” his wife stayed in Queens.

    At the time, they only had three kids, and they had no idea if his show was going to succeed. Therefore, they made whatever sacrifices were needed to make it happen.

    Scarpulla was the most understanding but truthful person, even when Romano was flaunting his success. When the sitcom premiered, and he and his friend, Kevin James, were set to go to Las Vegas for the celebration, Anna teased him about him partying while she was caring for their children.

    And when the comedian bragged about having a national sitcom where he was the main lead, she laughed and said, “You’re still the [expletive] I married,” and they laughed about it.

    Ray Romano takes to the ice at Rockefeller Center rink with sons Matt and Gregory. Celebs turned out to celebrate the premiere of the movie "Ice Age." | Source: Getty Images

    Fans of Romano’s sitcom know that most of the stories on “Everybody Loves Raymond” were based on the actual experiences of the actor and Scarpulla while raising their family. In real life, he did his best to be present for his family while still building his successful career.

    His wife and kids moved to Los Angeles during the last years of the show, and their lives continued wonderfully thanks to how popular the sitcom became. Romano’s children grew up on set, and his twins now work in the industry.

    Most importantly, he and Scarpulla were always solid, and he was there for his wife when she received one of the scariest pieces of news anyone could get. Scarpulla’s gynecologist discovered a lump on her breast and ran some tests, which led to a life-changing diagnosis.

    Scarpulla called her husband in tears, and he thought his father had died because he was very sick at the time, but his wife told him about what they found. Afterward, they got the lump biopsied, but they had to wait an entire weekend for the results.

    They received the news together Monday morning after hosting a Super Bowl party at their house. The couple had to act happy for their guests, but they were worried the entire time, although they told themselves it would not be cancer. They tried to remain calm until the actual results came in.

    They were in the bathroom when the call finally came. It was invasive breast cancer, and they both got emotional. Romano didn’t want to waste time getting her the treatments, so he called his manager from a closet and canceled a few things. There, the actor broke down in tears.

    They were both in disbelief for a while. Scarpulla explained that her husband was a hypochondriac, so when they finally accepted the news, she couldn’t help but laugh about the irony of it, saying:

    “You’re the one who always thinks he has cancer. I never do, and I’m the one who gets it.”

    Actor Ray Romano and his wife Anna Scarpulla arrive at the series wrap party of "Everybody Loves Raymond" at Hanger 8 on April 28, 2005 in Santa Monica, California | Source: Getty Images

    Raymond” at Hanger 8 on April 28, 2005 in Santa Monica, California | Source: Getty Images

    However, Scarpulla admitted she was glad it was her and not her husband. “I guess I’m stronger in that sense,” she told Marlo Thomas.

    Things got highly emotional when on the day of Scarpulla’s surgery, Romanos’ father passed away. The actor’s mom called them while they were driving to the hospital and said today might be his father’s last day. It was while Scarpulla was being prepped for surgery when Romano’s mother called again with the sad news.

    Romano kept the news from his wife, but it was like she knew somehow, and they both understood that his father was probably there for Scarpulla, watching, so everything with her surgery went well. The actor revealed:

    “I learned how strong she is, and I learned, you know, I’m not the most demonstrative man but when something like this happens, and you face that fact that you may lose someone like this, it shines a light on how much you love this person. […] And I should say it. The reason this marriage works is, thankfully, because she knows I love her.”

    During that difficult time, the actor had to step up and be strong for his wife and the entire family. He excelled at it, and their whole experience moved Thomas.

    Meanwhile, Scarpulla said one of her biggest fears was losing her hair during her four rounds of chemo. Furthermore, after raising her four kids, she didn’t like having to focus on herself too much. She explained:

    “I take on everybody’s stress, but this had to be all about me. I’m not like that!”

    Luckily, everything went well for them. Scarpulla recovered fully, and Romano was there the entire time. However, they decided to give back and share their experience because they had “dodged a bullet.”

    Romano has always acknowledged that he and his family have a good life. He can do what he wants because of his success. However, he said he is “no different than everybody else.”

    Romano revealed that he wears a Casio F91W, which cost him $12, and it has been working for over 30 years. Scarpulla thinks it’s the worst thing he has ever bought, but Romano disagrees.

    The rest of his family keeps him modest, and they still inspire most of his jokes and stand-up material. When asked if they were anytime bothered by it, the comedian said that his children loved being in his routines.

    Ray Romano tells Ellen DeGeneres about his family on February 5, 2019. | Source:

    However, Scarpulla has complained about it, and the actor revealed that when that happens, he tells her “to go cry in a bag of money.”

    Romano also told Conan O’Brien that marriage was “all about scoring points.” He recounted a story about driving his wife to her colonoscopy.

    The doctor told him to return in two hours because the procedure takes a while, so the actor passed a candle and perfume store, thinking, “I’m gonna score some points.” He decided to buy his wife a little gift to cheer her up after her medical checkup.

    Romano also buys her flowers randomly to keep “scoring points” but says she doesn’t have to do anything because she’s always ahead in “points.” Therefore, his life isn’t much different from married people who are just trying to make each other happy as much as possible.

    However, they also get into arguments randomly, as the actor told Ellen DeGeneres later. He explained that he was in the bathroom, and his wife came in “mid-argument,” talking about something that happened the previous night, and that’s something every couple has dealt with as well. That’s something they’ve lived with for over 30 years.

    Meanwhile, all of Romano and Scarpulla’s children are grown up, but like he and his wife did, his children lived with them well into adulthood.

    The actor used to believe his children would never move out because they lived in their father’s excellent properties with a private movie theater and more amenities. However, Scarpulla bought them a condo in Studio City and told them to move there.

    Romano revealed his wife was happy they had moved out for a week. However, she later started complaining about them not calling or coming over. But the actor reminded her:

    “They never talked to you when they were here.”

    Their youngest son, Joseph, lived with them for a bit longer, but now all their children have moved out. However, they’re still tight-knit. The twins, Gregory and Matthew, who are his carbon copies, even appeared with their father on “The Late Late Show with James Corden” during the pandemic.

    The family also goes on trips, as Romano revealed to Ellen DeGeneres in 2019, recalling the time his family took a trip to Sicily.

    They had been there before when “Everybody Loves Raymond” recorded an episode in Italy. Romano and his wife decided to take a trip to Sicily, specifically to the little town where her parents lived for 40 years until they moved to the United States.

    Ray Romano & wife Anna Scarpulla during HBO Britney Party in 2001 | Source: Getty Images

    However, they returned with their whole family—13 people—and rented a little boat for the family, where Romano tried to get sexy with his wife. Everyone was at the bottom deck because it had air conditioning, and it was August. However, he and Scarpulla remained on the top deck.

    The actor turned to his wife and said they could get “frisky” and “no one would know.” He told her it would be “exciting,” to which Scarpulla responded, “For who?” They’re incredibly compatible and can share humor.

    That’s what Romano told Thomas when asked what’s the glue that keeps them together. He explained that he’s a person that needs attention because he’s a performer at heart, but Scarpulla is different.

    She doesn’t need any of that, is not threatened, and doesn’t feel neglected when the spotlight is not on her. He admitted that he sometimes doesn’t give her enough attention, but Scarpulla said she only needed him to care for the family, which he always did.

    She has repeatedly proved that over the years by prioritizing her family and mainly posting about them on her social media and making videos on TikTok, showing their closeness.

    Meanwhile, the actor would make a calendar for his wife every Christmas, and it’s full of their family pictures with funny captions.

    Scarpulla is healthy and thriving now and turned 60 years old in 2023. She was born on February 24, 1963. Romano couldn’t have been luckier to find his perfect match.

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