Bethenny Frankel returned to work on Wednesday, September 12, with her late boyfriend, Dennis Shields, on her mind.
“It’s definitely been a different kind of summer. I am thinking about Dennis today,” the Real Housewives of New York City star, 47, told Extra at the launch of her Skinnygirl Jeans line at Macy’s Herald Square in New York City. “He would have been so happy about this launch. He was the most excited when I was working and successful.”
The event marked Frankel’s first public appearance since Shields was found dead at the age of 51 on August 10 from a suspected overdose in his Trump Tower apartment.
“He was a cheerleader, so he would have been counting the numbers and looking on the website and asking how many pairs of jeans and jean jackets we sold,” she said. “He is definitely with me here tonight.”
The Skinnygirl mogul’s RHONY costars Luann de Lesseps, Sonja Morgan and newcomer Barbara Kavovit supported her at Wednesday’s launch, which was filmed for the Bravo reality series.
Frankel and the businessman started dating in 2016, the same year she finalized her divorce from Jason Hoppy, with whom she shares 8-year-old daughter Bryn. Though their relationship was on and off, Frankel and Shields seemed to be going strong in the final months of his life. A source previously confirmed to Us that the banker proposed to the reality star in April, and the pair were “definitely making plans to move forward with things and trying to make it work.”
Frankel had faith in her future with Shields. “They were writing lists of what needed to change to improve their relationship,” a second source told Us in August. “Bethenny was so hopeful. She was so in love with Dennis and wanted to be with him.”