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Joyce Indig: Early Life, Career, and Family

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Joyce Indig is no household name herself, but she was the former wife of comedian Rodney Dangerfield. Here’s all you need to know about her:

Early Life

Joyce Indig was born on April 6, 1927 in Bronx, Bronx County, New York, United States. The names of her parents are Rhea and Max Indig. She had an older brother.


Details of her educational background are unknown.


She sang professionally on The Art Ford Show, WPIX, channel 11 in NY, May 28, 1949. She was later that year reported to have seen Franchot Tone, producer and director of stage and TV and former leading man in movies. Joyce had been described as a specialist in torch songs and ballads performing in clubs in New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Montreal. The recording of Wish Me Luck (1949) was praised by Skitch Henderson on his WNBC radio show.Joyce-Indig-2024

Rodney Dangerfield’s Ex-Wife

Public records show Joyce Indig was twice married to Rodney Dangerfield, whose real name was Jacob Cohen. Their first marriage was in 1951, but details about the duration are unknown. They split in 1961. Dangerfield later married Joan Child in 1993. Joyce Indig and Rodney Dangerfield had two kids together: Brian Roy and Melanie Roy-Friedman.

Marriage and Personal Life

She met a young comic – Jack Roy in those days – later Rodney Dangerfield. They married in Manhattan on October 3 1951. The couple had their first child in 1960, a boy. In 1961 the two divorced. They remained close however and reconciled in 1963 and remarried. A daughter was born soon after. Joyce later developed debilitating arthritis and her husband worked hard to stay close to raise the children – opening his own comedy club in New York City in 1969 – called Dangerfield’s. They divorced again in 1970. Unfortunately, Joyce passed away in 1977 in New York at the age of 50.

Her Ex-Husband, Rodney Dangerfield

Rodney Dangerfield was an American stand-up comedian, actor and producer – born Jacob Cohen in 1921 in Babylon, New York. His signature lowbrow humor, punctuated by “I get no respect!” earned him comedic fame.

Few details about Rodney Dangerfield’s early life and education exist. His father was a vaudeville performer who had a strained relationship with him. Dangerfield wrote jokes as a teen and performed stand-up as “Jack Roy” in his early twenties. But initial success was nonexistent. Sometime he even worked as a singing waiter.

Dangerfield adopted his iconic stage name Rodney Dangerfield in the 1960s. His comedic persona revolved around a character who was constantly disrespected and trodden. Jokes like “My wife is so ugly, the mud screams when she takes a mud bath” became his trademark. Dangerfield’s self-deprecating humor sold audiences and his career took off. His comedic timing made him a regular on late-night talk shows like “The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson.”

Dangerfield’s success went beyond stand-up. In films he appeared notably in the comedies Caddyshack (1980) and Back to School (1986). He produced and wrote for television. At his death in 2004, his net worth was estimated at around USD 10 million.

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