'The Golden Bachelor' Contestant Ellen Goltzer Is Still Mourning Her Friend

'The Golden Bachelor' contestant Ellen Goltzer is still in mourning over the death of her friend, Roberta Zaktzer, who died from cancer.


Sep. 29 2023, Published 10:12 a.m. ET

Ellen Goltzer meets Gerry on 'The Golden Bachelor.'
Source: Getty Images

The Gist:

  • Ellen Goltzer, one of the contestants on The Golden Bachelor, paid tribute to her friend Roberta Zaktzer during her introduction.
  • Roberta was a long-time Bachelor fan who died shortly before Ellen left to start filming the show.
  • Ellen's story was just one of several that had Bachelor fans in tears during the first episode.
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The newest season of The Bachelor isn't quite like previous installments in the franchise. The Golden Bachelor focuses on Gerry Turner, a man in his 70s who is looking for love. It's a spicy new direction for the series, and one that has many viewers intrigued following the show's first episode.

That premiere also came with its fair share of moving moments from both Gerry and the show's contestants. One of the most moving moments came from Ellen Goltzer, one of the contestants, who told the story of Robert Zaktzer, her life-long friend and confidante who recently died after a battle with cancer.

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Who was Roberta Zaktzer in 'The Golden Bachelor?'

Although Roberta herself wasn't on the show, Ellen's tribute to her friend left a lasting impression on those watching at home. Roberta died on Sept. 10, 2023, just days before Ellen was set to start her journey on the show. Ellen said it was Roberta who ultimately inspired her to sign up for The Golden Bachelor, meaning she quite literally wouldn't be on the show without her. Ellen also said that Roberta was a constant source of encouragement in her life.

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Roberta died from cancer at just 71 years old, and was a life-long fan of the show. Ellen is a former teacher, and she certainly made a strong first impression on Gerry. The Golden Bachelor may adhere to many of the rules that govern every season of the show, but it seems like this season may be a little more emotional and wholesome than your typical season.

'The Golden Bachelor' is already making fans cry.

Ellen's story was just one of several that moved some viewers of The Golden Bachelor to tears just minutes into the premiere.

Gerry's own story is deeply moving, as he wasn't a bachelor his whole life. In fact, Gerry was in a committed marriage for 43 years before his wife Tina died from a sudden illness just as they were beginning their retirement. That story, and Gerry's full knowledge of what great love looks like, already got this season off to a much more contemplative start.

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Because of their advanced age, the contestants on this season of The Bachelor are likely to be much more grounded and have a deeper understanding of the world. That doesn't mean that there won't be plenty of typical Bachelor drama, but it does mean that this season of The Bachelor will likely balance that drama out with a hearty dose of sincerity. Thankfully, Bachelor in Paradise is airing right after, so if you want a little drama, you can just head over there.

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