After legendary country couple George Jones and Tammy Wynette finally split, their relationship continued on its rocky road for a while before finding a happy place.
Although Wynette was “tickled” that Jones had given her a gold Cadillac for her post-divorce birthday, they also went to court when he left hundreds of thousands of dollars in child support for their daughter. And at the time, Wynette said she wanted “nothing to do with George Jones” from her past to interfere with her life after her marriage.
Jones and Wynette had spouses when they met, but they also had marketable musical chemistry. Eventually, they acknowledged their romantic feelings for each other, especially during an argument she had with her soon-to-be second ex-husband.
Jones confessed his love and Wynette told him his feelings were mutual. They married in 1969 and fans are still raving about their famous love story, but their union was rocky. He admitted to excessive alcohol and drug use, and she said he once chased her through her house with a loaded shotgun.
Wynette filed for divorce in 1973, hoping to give Jones some incentive to get sober, and they fixed things for a while. Inevitably, they finalized their divorce in 1975.
In a 1978 Washington Post interview, Wynette revealed that she and Jones continued to have a somewhat tumultuous relationship. They had a daughter during their six-year marriage and he was to pay child support.
Jones “tickled” the “Stand By Your Man” singer when he gave her a gold Cadillac as a birthday surprise after their divorce. But he fell into arrears on $360,000 in child support, and she “draged him to court,” according to the Post.
“It’s nothing really personal,” Wynette explained. “It’s just that for the first time in my life I’m very happy. I want it to stay that way and I don’t want anything to do with George Jones and me interfering with my life right now.
After Wynette went public with a story about being kidnapped from a Nashville parking lot, police never caught the attacker. Since this happened in the years following her divorce from Jones, some people naturally pointed the finger at him as the masked gunman.
Wynette might even consider immediately afterwards that Jones, in a bitter rage, might have kidnapped and attacked her. The Post reported they “[squared] her shoulders and [threw] Chin back,” after making her statement in 1978 that she refused to allow “anything to do with George Jones” to interfere with her life.
“I want to live a normal life as much as possible. I think I’ll just ramp up the safety again if needed,” she shared, adding that she plans to go to the “gun stand” to learn how to shoot accurately and “properly.”
Notably, her daughters later revealed that they believed the kidnapping story was fabricated to cover up alleged abuse by Wynette’s last husband.
After Wynette died in 1998, Jones released a statement. “Life is too short. We ended up being very close friends and now I’ve lost that friend. And I couldn’t be sadder,” he shared (Rolling Stone, per People).
How to get help: In the US, contact the Administration of Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Hotline at 1-800-662-4357.
How to get help: In the US, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or text START to 88788.