Jerry Lee Lewis didn't want a life of one wife, but multiple over the course of his career! Born on September 29, 1935, in Louisiana, Lewis started off his musical career by performing at his quite conservative Christian university, which expelled him because of the genre of music he once played. Yet, he would eventually win a Grammy Award because of his rock and roll and blues style of music.
The marital beginnings: Jerry Lee Lewis and his first wife
Jerry Lee Lewis had married his first wife when he was just 16 years old! He married Dorothy Barton, the daughter of a preacher, yet their marriage only lasted for 20 months.
His next wife would be to Jane Mitchum in September 1953, of whom he exchanged nuptials just 23 days after his divorce from Barton! Together, Lewis and Mitchum bore their sons, Jerry Lee Lewis Jr. and Ronnie Guy Lewis. After 4 years, Lewis filed to divorce Jane and decided it was time to move on to his next wife...
Just months later, Jerry married his third wife, Myra Gale Brown, in December 1957. Not only was Lewis not officially divorced yet from his previous wife Jane, but Myra Brown was just 13 years old! On top of that: she was Lewis's first cousin once removed. Yikes! Due to this scandal, his British tour was completely cancelled after three concerts. She divorced him in 1970, citing abuse.
Lewis' next wives:
- Jaren Elizabeth Gunn Pate (October 1971 – June 8, 1982)
- Shawn Stephens (June - August 1983)
- Kerrie McCarver (April 1984 - June 2005)
- Judith Lewis (April 2012 - present)
Lewis has had several ups and downs with all of his wives. His third wife Jaren had tragically drowned in a swimming pool a few weeks before they finalized their divorce. Shawn Stephens had also died during their marriage.
His most recent wife, Judith, had met Jerry when she had begun to nurse him, as his health was in bad shape. She told The Guardian in 2015,
"He was very sick, so in taking care of him and talking about the way we grew up, we fell in love with each other."
And in sickness and in health, Jerry Lee Lewis and his wife Judith have now been together for nine years.