Was Bethenny Frankel secretly engaged to Dennis Shields at the time he died? A new report claims he proposed to her and even gave her a diamond ring!
Bethenny Frankel and late boyfriend Dennis Shields‘ relationship was apparently a lot more serious than she let on. A new report claims they had been talking marriage before his untimely passing at the age of 51 on Aug. 10 following an alleged accidental oxycodone overdose. “He proposed to her with a ring in April. She wasn’t wearing the ring. There were some hurdles to overcome before she could make that level of a commitment. She loved him. He’s her family and her best friend and her confidante. Her partner and her business partner,” a source close to Bethenny tells PEOPLE magazine.
The 47-year-old Real Housewives Of New York star reportedly did not turn him down. “Very few people knew about the proposal. He’s proposed before — but never with a ring. She didn’t say no,” the friend says. “She would have loved to have married him, but there were some hurdles to overcome first.” The pal adds that “Bethenny is devastated.”
One of the hurdles could have been Dennis’ estranged wife Jill, who was a high school friend of Bethenny’s and how the reality star knew him. The pair had been married for 28 years and separated just a few months before Bethenny began dating him in 2016. Jill and Dennis were still legally married, which would have been a complication for the financier to wed Bethenny. It would not have been a good look for her to be rocking an engagement ring while he wasn’t yet divorced.
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A devastated Bethenny was seen weeping uncontrollably at his burial in Long Island following his funeral on Aug. 13. Dressed appropriately for mourning in a sleek black dress with a white collar and cuffs, she stood under a friend’s clear umbrella with tears streaming down her face while getting a comforting hug. She finally broke her silence over Dennis’ tragic passing earlier in the day, sharing an Instagram photo of her sweetie in bed alongside her beloved dog Cookie, who died last October at the age of 17. “Rest In Peace my sweet babies who gave me endless unconditional love. #nowandforever,” she heartbreakingly wrote as the caption.