"I knew Don Rickles from the early, early days of his career when he came to California," Reiner says. "I was doing a program with Ernie Kovacs, who told me to see a new comic. I went with Frank Sinatra to see this young comedian, Don Rickles. I got to know him well after that."
"He did my movie, Enter Laughing, a key scene in the movie," he continues. "I just saw the movie on TV last week and called him to tell him about it, but was not able to speak with him at that time. What people don't know is that he was a serious actor who studied acting in New York City and he was a very dear person."
Reiner says there was a side of Rickles that his fans rarely saw.
"There were two sides to Don: the professional comedian-actor, and, when you talked with him about his wife, Barbara, and his family, a very soft side," he shares. "He was a very sweet person and this is sad news."
Rickles is survived by his wife of 52 years, Barbara, as well as his daughter, Mindy Mann, and two grandchildren.