Tammy Wynette was in a brief marriage with her ex-husband Don Chapel in the sixties. Don was a songwriter.
Moreover, Wynette’s romance with famed county musician George Jones is not hidden from the public. And now their relationship is the main focus of the upcoming American drama television miniseries George & Tammy.
The series is about two lovers who probably shouldn’t have been together. George was the hard-drinking king, while Tammy was his supportive queen. They had an empire built of everything that makes a good country ballad but not good love.
George & Tammy is not only a project based on the singer’s life. In 1981, CBS aired a television film “Stand by Your Man,” a biographical film based on the life of the county music star, including her tumultuous marriage with George.
Meet Tammy Wynette’s Ex-Husband Don Chapel Was A Song-Writer
Don Chapel was Tammy Wynette’s second husband, whom she met after moving to Nashville in 1965.
He worked as a front desk attendant at the Red Anchor Motel in Nashville, where Tammy was staying. The couple soon developed a strong connection through their day-to-day interactions at the motel.
Don was also an aspiring musician and songwriter who would later write several hit county songs, including “When the Grass Grows Over Me,” made commercially successful by George Jones. After dating for quite a while, the pair finally got married in 1967.
However, their courtship was brief, with Tammy’s growing affection for George leading to the couple’s divorce in 1968. The singer later claimed in her autobiography that Don had taken and traded her inappropriate pictures to other male colleagues.
Don denied the allegations and later fined a lawsuit against Tammy for 37 million dollars. The pair had no children from their marriage, and Chapel passed away in 2015.
According to Tammy, George helped her one evening when her kid was hospitalized with food poisoning. Don was irritated with Tammy playing George’s music all day on their record player. He then started derogatory words and profanity at her.
Furious by Don’s conduct, George overturned the couple’s dining table. Later, he and Tammy proceeded to confess their love for each other to Chapel. He then escorted Tammy and her three daughters out of Don’s home -they never came back.
After leaving Don, they flew to Mexico to get a divorce, but her marriage to Don was later annulled as she remarried soon after her first marriage to Euple Byrd. George and Tammy officially wed in Ringgold, Georgia, on February 16, 1969.
Actor Pat Healy Plays Don In Showtime’s George & Tammy
American actor and writer Pat Healy portrays the role of Tamy’s second husband, Don Chapel, in the series. He is notable for his roles in Better Call Saul (2015), The Post (2017), and Station 19 (2018).
Tammy met Don after she moved to Nashville in 1965. At the time, she signed with Epic Records and released her first single, “Apartment No. 9,” under the production of Billy Sherrill in 1965. Soon, the pair moved into an East Nashville apartment and put on a road show.
For several months, Tammy and Don performed in several states such as Pennsylvania and Georgia. Don also tried to help her to secure a county recording contract with the Hickory, Kapp, Musicor, and Decca labels. However, she was turned down by every company.
The pair married in 1967, and their marriage was annulled in 1976. Tammy then married George Jones in 1969 and the couple stayed together until their divorce in 1975. She was then briefly married to her fourth husband, Michael Tomlin, in 1976.
On July 6, 1978, Tammy married her fifth husband, George Richey, a songwriter, record producer, and music publisher. The pair remained together until her demise in 2010 at the age of 56.