Jay Leno filed for guardianship of his wife, Mavis, following reports that she had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.
first late show The host filed legal documents on Friday, January 26, according to TMZ. In them he asked to be curator of his wife’s estate.
While Leno did not specify that his wife was ill, a source told the publication that Mavis suffers from a progressive and fatal form of dementia.
Jay and Mavis Leno met at the Comedy Store in the 1970s when Jay was performing live, according to PEOPLE. They married in 1980.
It is unclear when doctors diagnosed Mavis. But Leno shared that she had already stopped driving before he was involved in a gasoline fire that left him with third-degree burns in November 2022.
Jay Leno checked on his wife before entering the Grossman Burn Center
The incident sent Jay Leno to the emergency room, where he was told to go directly to the Grossman Burn Center in Los Angeles. He did go to the center and was treated by specialists for ten days. But before registering, he went home to see his wife first.
“My wife doesn’t drive anymore and I didn’t want her to be stuck not knowing what was going on,” he told Hoda Kotb during an interview on the show. Today is the show. “It just seemed like the right thing to do and I think it was.”
“So you loved your wife more than you cared about yourself?” -Kotb asked.
“If that is!” she responded.
While Jay Leno and Mavis have shared a somewhat private romance, he has always been quick to talk about her during interviews. According to him, she is the reason why she is the man she is today. He believes that comes down to abandoning her ego and accepting that she shines where he doesn’t.
“I said always marry your conscience,” he told Kelly Clarkson. “Marry the person you want to be, who is kind, and maybe whatever defects you have, they don’t have them. That worked for me, so for me I married the perfect person.”