At the March premiere of Rita Wilson’s Broadway play, 'Fish in the Dark,' Tom Hanks sat alone, wanting nothing to distract him from the joy of watching his wife perform. After the curtain closed, he couldn’t help gushing to strangers.
“She’s fantastic, which is why I married her,” he proudly told an audience member. In early April, Tom was by her side again as Rita, 58, took medical leave from the play to undergo a double bilateral mastectomy and reconstruction after a second-opinion screening showed signs of cancer.
Rita with Tom in January 2014. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)
Sweet, supportive Tom has “been a pillar of strength,” throughout the ordeal, says a family friend, who confides that the star held his wife’s hand and boosted her spirits. “Tom was really scared, but he’s strong and didn’t want to show Rita how afraid he was,” says the insider, who confides that the silver lining in this terrifying crisis is that it deepened the connection between the pair, who will celebrate their 27th anniversary on April 30.
Related: Rita Wilson Has Breast Cancer, Undergoes Double Mastectomy
Tom, 58, and Rita have enjoyed one of Hollywood’s most stable marriages — but they’ve known some trouble of late. The couple briefly separated last summer due to conflicting career ambitions and disagreements over their son Chet, 24, who spent time in rehab for cocaine addiction.
Tom and Rita in February 2014. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)
Though Rita has denied the separation, “Each blamed the other,” confides the insider. In February, they received another blow when Rita’s doctors told her “they didn’t like what they were seeing” during a checkup.
To read the full story on Tom and Rita, pick up the new issue of 'Closer Weekly,' on newsstands now!
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