He was married three times. He was married twice to Joyce Indig, with whom he had a son, Brian, and a daughter, Melanie. In 1970, Dangerfield asked Dr. Cody Sweet, international platform speaker, to marry him but she turned him down respectfully. From 1993 until his death, he was married to Joan Child. He and comic Sam Kinison were also very good friends.
Dangerfield resented being confused with his on-stage persona. Although his wife Child described him as "classy, gentlemanly, sensitive and intelligent," he was often treated like the loser he played. In his 2004 autobiography, It's Not Easy Bein' Me: A Lifetime of No Respect but Plenty of Sex and Drugs (ISBN 0-06-621107-7), he confessed to a lifetime drug habit. The book's original title was My Love Affair With Marijuana.
Rodney Dangerfield (born Jacob Rodney Cohen, November 22, 1921 – October 5, 2004) was an American comedian and actor, known for the catchphrase "I don't get no respect!" and his monologues on that theme. He is also remembered for his 1980s film roles, especially in Easy Money, Caddyshack, and Back to School.
Dangerfield was born in Deer Park within the Town of Babylon, New York, in Suffolk County, Long Island, New York. He was the son of Jewish parents, the vaudevillian performer Phil Roy (Philip Cohen) and Dotty Teitelbaum. His ancestors came to the United States from Hungary. His father was never home and he would usually see him only twice a year. Several years later, his father begged for forgiveness and Dangerfield forgave him.
After his father abandoned the family, his mother moved him and his sister to Kew Gardens, Queens and he attended Richmond Hill High School (Queens, New York) where he graduated in 1939. To support himself and his family, he worked jobs like selling newspapers (in which he would get paid a dollar), selling ice cream at the beach and delivering groceries.
At the age of 15, he began to write for standup comedians, and began to perform at the age of 20 under the name Jack Roy. He struggled financially for nine years, at one point performing as a singing waiter until he was fired, and also working as a performing acrobatic diver before giving up show business to take a job selling aluminum siding to support his wife and family. He later said that he was so little known then that "at the time I quit, I was the only one who knew I quit!"
Rodney's trademark white shirt and red tie are on permanent display at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C.
After regaining consciousness from his brain surgery, Rodney's first request was to watch The Jerry Springer Show.
In Febuary 1995, Rodney became the first entertainer to own a website.
In 1989, Rodney hit #89 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart with the song 'Rappin Rodney'.
In 1984, Rodney did a television commercial for Miller Lite.
In 1997, Rodney became outspoken about his lifelong bouts with depression.
Entertainment Weekly named Rodney #36 out of the 50 funniest people.
Rodney stood at 5'10½" or 1.79 m.
In 1995, Rodney was honored with a Creative Achievement Award at the American Comedy Awards, USA.
He has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, at 6366 Hollywood Blvd.
I tell ya I tell ya
Jewish Husbands, Jewish Spies
My Wife & I