Ellen Corby was gay and was in a relationship with a female partner named Stella Luchetta. Prior to her gay relationship, the famous actress was married to a man named Francis Corby in 1934, but the marriage only lasted for a decade before they divorced.
Ellen and Stella lived together for 45 years, but they never publicly declared their love for each other, nor did they ever get married. Keep reading to discover all the facts about Grandma Walton’s secret love life below.
Was Ellen Corby A Lesbian?
Ellen Corby was a lesbian. However, she never openly admitted it, as this would have been unacceptable in the movie industry at the time. So, to keep her reputation and career intact, Ellen pretended to be straight for several years.
The famous actress was first married to a man named Francis Corby for a decade, although she never revealed if she ever truly had any feelings for her husband. After her marriage ended in 1944, Ellen remained single till she met a woman named Stella Luchetta in 1954. Although the entertainment industry was more accepting of gays at the time, Ellen still never publicly declared her sexual preference.
Ellen Corby’s On-Screen Husband Was Also Gay
Ellen Corby became famous for playing Grandma Walton on the CBS show The Waltons. On the show, she was happily married to Grandpa Walton as played by actor Will Geer. While Will Geer seemed like the perfect husband to Ellen on screen, he was also gay in real life, just like her.
Will Geer was once married to a woman named Herta Ware for twenty years and even had three children with her. However, he later became involved with a fellow male actor Harry Hay, who was openly a gay rights activist.
Who Was Ellen Corby’s Gay Partner?
Ellen Corby’s partner was Stella Luchetta. Ellen and Stella met in 1954 and instantly fell in love. They moved in together but never revealed the sexual relationship between them. Instead, they pretended to be only very good friends and kept this story for the 45 years they were together.
Despite their efforts to keep their affair a secret, many people in the movie industry at the time knew the true relationship existing between Ellen and Stella. Stella was the chief mourner at Ellen’s funeral in 1999, and it was reported that Ellen’s last words to her were, “I love you”.
Ellen Corby Was First Married To a Man
Ellen Corby was first married to a man named Francis Corby. Francis was a film director and cinematographer, and he was ten years older than Ellen. Ellen and Francis met while she worked as a script girl at Hal Roach Studios and ROK Studios.
They got married in 1934, but a decade later, the marriage ended. Ellen and Francis’ marriage did not produce any children, and neither of them revealed the reason for their divorce. Their marriage was also not trailed by any controversies while it lasted.
When Did Ellen Corby Die and Did She Really Have a Stroke?
Ellen Corby died on April 14, 1999, at the Motion Picture & Television Hospital in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, California. She suffered a serious stroke in 1976, and this left her with aphasia, almost bringing an end to her successful acting career. At the time she had the stroke, Ellen was acting on the CBS show The Waltons, and she had to take off time from the show for over a season to attend to her health.
The complications from Ellen’s stroke impaired her movement and speech, but she continued her acting career after recovery, although she only played the character of a grandma with aphasia. Ellen finally died peacefully at the age of 87, 23 years after she had a stroke.