– Her Family – Her Marriage – Her Husband, Gene Raymond

While many Hollywood couples eloped to avoid the inevitable swarms of reporters, Jeanette had long dreamed of a traditional ceremony. Thus, after a formal engagement to actor Gene Raymond, Jeanette walked down the aisle of the Wilshire Methodist Church on June 16, 1937, wearing a shell-pink brocaded gown designed by Adrian and accompanied by bridesmaids that included Fay Wray and Ginger Rogers.

Enormous crowds outside the church delayed the arriving guests and the service started 25 minutes late. Nelson Eddy sang “I Love You Truly,” and Jeanette walked down the aisle to Lohengrin.

The sheet music for the two songs Nelson sang can be seen here:
O Perfect Love
I Love You Truly

After a Hawaiian honeymoon, the “MacRaymonds” returned to Twin Gables, a rambling Tudor house built by Gene for his bride. There they frequently entertained celebrities of the musical world, and their guest book was a veritable who’s who of the contemporary music scene. During the war, Jeanette maintained a Sunday open house for young soldiers and sailors which included lots of food and songs. (Unlike Nelson Eddy, who seemed to relocate every other year or so, Jeanette and Gene occupied Twin Gables for two decades, leaving only when Jeanette’s declining health dictated a move to a condominium.)

From their story-book marriage until Jeanette’s death on January 14, 1965, Gene and Jeanette were, as columnist Hedda Hopper wrote, “a refreshing exception…a quieter, more retiring couple would be hard to find. There just is no scandal in their lives. They are almost notoriously congenial…each [having] a proper respect for the other’s talents and achievements.”

A decade after Jeanette’s death in 1965, Gene remarried. His second wife’s first name was, coincidentally, Nelson—the former Mrs. Bentley Hees. “Nels,” as she was called, died in 1995. Gene followed her on May 3, 1998. He was laid next to Jeanette at Forest Lawn, with Nels’ family among the mourners.