TV star Al Roker has been married to his wife, Deborah Roberts, for the longest time, and it only gets better as each year rolls by. The couple's love started with a grand gesture and a sweet friendship.
Al Roker and Deborah Roberts' love is against all odds and company rivalry. Roberts and the weatherman have been married for almost three decades, and although they work for two rival companies, ABC and NBC, the couple leaves everything behind once they are home and in each other's arms.
Roberts and Al first met in 1990 when she got employment as a reporter at NBC. They struck up a friendship that was good-natured and healthy. Once speaking in an interview, Roberts explained that Al was "so sweet."
Al Roker and Deborah Roberts attend the American Theatre Wing Centennial Gala at Cipriani 42nd Street on September 24, 2018 in New York City | Source: Getty Images.
She recalled how he often hushed his daughter and showed her pictures while they were at work. According to Deborah, she did not think of anything beyond friendship, and it stayed that way for years.
At the time they met, Al was married to Alice Bell. The duo tied the knot in 1984 and were together until the 1990s. Bell also worked in the communications industry as a producer for WNBC-TV. While it was Bell's first marriage, it was the second time Al walked down the aisle.
Al Roker and Deborah Roberts attend the Fourth Annual Berggruen Prize Gala celebrating 2019 Laureate Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in New York City on December 16, 2019 in New York City | Source: Getty Images
The duo adopted their daughter, Courtney, and by 1994, the marriage ended. While the meteorologist tried working out his relationship with Bell, he and Roberts remained friends.
INSIDE AL AND ROBERTS' FRIENDSHIP
Al Roker and Deborah Roberts at the premiere of the movie "The Cider House Rules" on November 15, 1999. | Source: Getty Images
Roberts thought Al was adorable for talking about his family during their years of friendship. She described him as a nice guy, and she valued their friendship. After a while, Roberts was transferred to Miami when Al stayed in the New York office.
Through this period, the pals stayed in touch. Roberts also had a stint in Atlanta before returning to New York in 1992 to work as a correspondent for Dateline NBC. By that time, Al and Bell were separated.
Al Roker and Deborah Roberts at the IRTS Foundation Gold Medal Award Honors Robert Wright in New York City, on February 26, 1997. | Source: Getty Images
She and the TV star stayed friends, and according to Al, he was not her type. He noted that she dated "stud muffins." Deborah agreed to this, calling Al a nice guy, but was "kind of annoying." She relayed:
"He was a nice guy but kind of annoying, overly chatty. I just didn't think of him beyond a friend."
AL MAKES A MOVE
Al Roker and Deborah Roberts attends the New York Public Library 2017 Library Lions Gala at the New York Public Library at the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building on November 6, 2017 in New York City | Source: Getty Images
While it was clear that Deborah did not see their friendship beyond platonic, the same could not be said of Al. The start of their romance took a little nudge from him when Deborah was away on an assignment.
The longtime correspondent was sent on an assignment in Barcelona in 1992 and left Al in charge of helping her keep her home secure while she was away. While at it, the famous weather forecaster decided to snoop around a little.
On "The Kelly Clarkson Show," Al explained that he went through her pantry and refrigerator and found nothing. According to him, it was as though she did not use the kitchen. However, one day before Deborah returned home, Al played the perfect gentleman.
He stocked up her fridge and pantry, ensuring she did not lack the essentials. Al also bought some flowers and left a "welcome home" note. Roberts returned home to the grand gesture and described it as "very touching."
At this point, she began to think there could be something more to all that sweetness. However, one thing led to another, and the pair went on their first date. A couple more dates followed this.
THE LOVEBIRDS GET MARRIED
Deborah Roberts and Al Roker attend Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Summer 2019 TCA Press Tour Event - Cocktail Reception at Private Residence on July 26, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California | Source: Getty Images
Al and Roberts started their relationship and dated for two years, within which she began wondering if there was a wedding in their future. Al revealed that his wife was becoming annoyed that he hadn't proposed.
She then asked him when it would be. Al told Roberts he would pop the question before Groundhog Day, and he kept his words. During a business trip to Arizona, the couple enjoyed a cool day overlooking the Grand Canyon, and it was there that Al got down on one knee.
Deborah Roberts and her husband, Al Roker, in New York, 2010 | Source: Getty Images
When speaking about the proposal, Al joked that if Roberts had declined the proposal, one of them wouldn't have returned. The duo got married and said their vows the following year at St. Thomas Episcopal Church. Parts of their guest list included broadcast icons Barbara Walters and Katie Couric.
Being man and wife and enjoying the beauty of marriage did not stop them from being competitors as far as work was concerned. However, it all boiled down to work. Deborah has worked on ABC's "20/20" since 1995, but sometimes she appears as a substitute on GMA.
Al revealed that on such days when Deborah worked as a substitute on the long-running show, he would go home and jovially say to her, "Hey sweetie, we crushed you like a bug again today."
WHAT AL AND ROBERT'S MARRIAGE IS LIKE
Al Roker with Nicholas Albert Roker, Deborah Roberts, and Leila Roker attend Nickelodeon's 28th Annual Kids' Choice Awards held at The Forum on March 28, 2015 in Inglewood, California | Source: Getty Images
It's been over two decades since they said their vows, but it is safe to say that nothing has made Al and Roberts look back in regret. Their love blossomed further from their wedding day, and Al maintained his romantic gestures.
The star keeps proving that his gentlemanly gesture of stocking up her fridge years ago was not a one-time thing. Roberts described her husband as a full-blown romantic who leaves tiny love notes for her.
She described the notes as either funny, encouraging, or naughty. Even when she traveled, Roberts noted that she would find those notes tucked into her purse or bags. The TV anchor described her husband as a "real romantic."
In 2020, Al was diagnosed with prostate cancer, which shook Deborah to the very foundation. She recalled being devastated while thinking of the possibility that he would not make it.
However, Al found strength in Roberts, letting People know that when someone "you love also happens to be your best advocate," that made all the difference. Al pulled through the ailment and thanked his wife for being his rock.