Karl Soderlund, former daytime talk show host Sally Jessy Raphael's husband of 57 years, has died at the age of 90. According to the Daily Mail, a friend of the family revealed the news, telling the outlet that Soderlund's death was due to complications caused by Alzheimer's.
"He put up a courageous fight against Alzheimer's and Parkinson's for the past five years and he never lost his brilliant sense of humor," the source said. "They had a wonderful 57 years together and literally never spent a day apart." The source continued, "Karl was known for his warmth and kindness, as well as his wicked sense of humor. He was loved by all. Sally is asking for privacy during this difficult time as she mourns her beloved husband." Soderlund had just celebrated his 90th birthday in June, with Raphael sharing a photo of them together on the big day, along with a photo of his birthday cake. In a caption on the post, Raphael called Soderlund the "love of my life," and expressed how excited she was to celebrate his big day with him.
When I married Karl, he was 5 years my senior. Somehow, over 60 years, my Peter Pan husband has remained forever young and handsome! Happy 90th birthday to the love of my life - so glad we can finally be together with loved ones to celebrate your amazing life! pic.twitter.com/pgmqddg7Bh— Sally Jessy Raphael (@SJRaphael) June 3, 2020
Soderlund was Raphael's second husband, whom she married in 1962 after divorcing her first husband, Andrew Vladimir. Raphael had two daughters with Vladmir: Allison and Andrea. Sadly, Allison died in 1992, and the age of 33. Her death was ruled an accidental overdose due to "combined effects of several prescribed drugs."
Raphael and Soderlund shared one adopted son. She reportedly has spent the past several years residing in Dutchess County, New York. She chose to be close to Soderlund so that she could care for him through his illnesses, as he was diagnosed with both Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease.
Raphael is most well known for hosting Sally — titled initially The Sally Jessy Raphael Show — October 17, 1983, until May 24, 2002. Soderlund took on the responsibility of being her manager just before she landed the show. At this time, she does not appear to have issued a statement on his death.