Anne Meara

Anne Meara

Meara in 2007, photo by Prphotos

Date of Birth: September 20, 1929

Place of Birth: Brooklyn, New York City, New York, U.S.

Date of Death: May 23, 2015

Place of Death: Manhattan, New York City, New York, U.S.

Ethnicity: Irish

Anne Meara was an American actress and comedian. She was married to comedian Jerry Stiller, until her death. They had two children, actors and comedians Ben Stiller and Amy Stiller.

Anne was the daughter of Mary T. (Dempsey) and Edward Joseph Meara. She was born to a family of Irish descent. She converted from Catholicism to Judaism early on in her marriage to Jerry Stiller, around 1961. The decision to convert was her own.

Anne’s paternal grandfather was named James Meara. James was born in Ireland.

Anne’s paternal grandmother was named Annie Breslin. Annie was born in Ireland.

Anne’s maternal grandfather was John Joseph Dempsey (the son of Cornelius Dempsey and Ellen Driscoll). John was born in New York, to Irish parents.

Anne’s maternal grandmother was Mary Elizabeth Shine (the daughter of Timothy Shine and Mary Reilley/Reilly/Riley). Anne’s grandmother Mary Elizabeth was born in New York, to an Irish father and to a New York-born mother, whose own parents, Michael Reilley/Reilly/Riley and Catherine Garrity/Gerety, were Irish immigrants.

Sources: Family history of Anne Meara, by Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak, at The Huffington Post –

Genealogy of Anne Meara (focusing on her mother’s side) –

Anne’s father on the 1910 U.S. Census –

Anne’s mother on the 1920 U.S. Census –


Curious about ethnicity

1 Response

  1. MaYaYaYa says:

    She died on the 23rd. Should be changed from May 13, 2015 to May 23rd, 2015.

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