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Dick Van Dyke Reveals the Affair That Ended His Marriage

Dick Van Dyke is a comedic and musical actor that has seen an incredible amount of success in his time. However, that success has also come with some hardships, and a good deal of regret. The star got married in the early days of his career and had four children. Him and his wife, Margie, stayed together for a number of decades before eventually divorcing. Near the end of their marriage, Dick Van Dyke had an affair that lasted for eight years. The relationship continued after the divorce. Recently, Dick has come clean about his regrets when it comes to his first marriage. Join Facts Verse as Dick Van Dyke reveals the affair that ended his marriage.

Dick Van Dyke was born Richard Wayne Van Dyke on December 13 of 1925. His career has lasted for over seven decades, and he is still working today at the age of 95. When Dick was young, he made the decision to drop out of high school and pursue a career in the United States Army Air Forces. This was during World War II, when volunteers were greatly needed. However, Dick came in underweight and was denied enrollment numerous times. Despite being denied, Dick kept trying. In his mind, if he pestered them long enough they were inevitably going to give him a job. Eventually, he was given a position as a radio announcer for the army. Although it wasn’t what he had in mind, this experience ended up serving the young man well.

He performed this duty for a few years before coming home and used his experience as an announcer in the army to get a job as a radio jockey in his home state of Illinois. In 1947, Dick formed a pantomime duo with a friend and the two toured in nightclubs to some success. In 1948, Dick made the decision to marry his longtime girlfriend, Margie Willett. The two had been dating for a few years, but couldn’t afford marriage until a fellow DJ offered to pay for the ceremony on the condition that the couple allowed for the wedding to be broadcast on the radio. The show was called Bride and Groom, and was centered around the concept of real marriages being recorded and broadcast. The couple gladly took the opportunity, resulting in their marriage being broadcast to many long before Dick’s rise to fame.

Despite her husband being bound for stardom, Margie herself had a distaste for Hollywood and the type of people that could be found there. The earthy woman generally chose not to wear makeup, and her and her husband were often mistaken for brother and sister. Dick has recalled that once Margie went to the store and purchased all of the copies she could find of a particular magazine with her husband on the cover. When the cashier saw her strange purchase, he asked her if she was Dick’s mother. This didn’t go over very well at parties, where Margie was often trampled over by other guests who assumed that she was just some stranger.

Despite their differences, Dick and Margie were together for over a century before all was said and done. The two had four children, and the family unit seemed very stable and happy. Nearly a decade after the marriage, Dick was set to make his debut on Broadway. The show was The Girls Against the Boys, and Dick was nervous. He had gotten the lead after auditioning for a minor role. He was chosen based on charisma alone, and had no experience whatsoever as a dancer. Thankfully, he proved to be a fast learner. He won a Tony award for his performance, and many see this role as his big break.

In 1961, Dick was given the lead role in his own CBS sitcom. Originally a role that Carl Reiner had written for himself, Reiner opted out and suggested Dick as his replacement. Dick gladly accepted, and the rest is history. Dick portrayed the character of Rob Petrie, a comedic writer. A 23-year-old Mary Tyler-Moore played his wife. The show was a major success, launching both of them into television stardom. The show stayed on their air until 1966. Over the span on the show’s run, Dick could be seen in a couple of notable roles on cinema screens.

As a result of his incredible success on Broadway, Dick was given the lead role in a film adaptation of the musical Bye Bye Birdie in 1963. The stage musical had only debuted a few years prior and proved to be incredibly popular. Likewise, the film adaptation gained Dick further mainstream notoriety. However, his next role is arguably the one that he has become best known for. In 1964, Dick was added to the cast of Walt Disney’s Mary Poppins in two separate roles. Not only did he play one of the main roles of Bert the chimney sweep, but he also played the villainous role of bank chairman Mr. Dawes. This musical adaptation of the British book series featured Dick in all of his singing and dancing glory, and it made him an icon.

In 1971, Dick was given a new sitcom in the form of The New Dick Van Dyke Show. This show saw him return to working with The Dick Van Dyke Show‘s Carl Reiner. Although the show was often praised, it didn’t get much traction with audiences. Dick considered the show an artistic failure a few years in and decided to end it after only three seasons. Over the course of the show’s run, Dick began to have increasing troubles with alcohol. Dick had always been a drinker, but the 1970s saw him becoming a full-blown alcoholic. At the same time, his wife was secretly become increasingly dependent on prescription medications. The two eventually overcame their problems, but not before being driven apart. If you’re enjoying this video so far, be sure to hit the like button to show your support! As well, subscribe and hit the notification bell if you’d like to be among the first to know when more Facts Verse videos are coming!

Dick Van Dyke has always said that he tried his best to be a positive role model for his four children. However, his alcohol dependency often made this a difficult task for the actor. Dick has said that he suffered from alcohol dependency for 25 years before eventually confronting his problem and seeking help. He decided to go to a rehab clinic. Inspired by her husband, Margie checked into the rehab clinic for her own substance abuse issues soon after him. Margie had kept a secret prescription pill habit that Dick knew nothing about. Dick has said he believes that he and his wife were seeking out drugs and alcohol as a means to cope with their failing marriage. Soon after their respective rehab visits, the two began to take long breaks from being around each other. As the relationship grew apart, Dick began to become romantically involved with his agent’s secretary. She was a struggling actress named Michelle Triola.

While Margie always hated Hollywood, Michelle loved it. Dick got along with Michelle in a way he never managed to get along with Margie, and that ultimately lead him to engage Michelle in an affair. Although him and his wife hadn’t been getting along very well, Dick recalls “writhing in guilt” as he got deeper and deeper into his extra-marital relationship with Michelle. Dick’s affair with Michelle lasted eight years before Dick’s divorce from Margie was finalized in 1984. Afterwards, him and Michelle proceeded to maintain a romantic relationship until Michelle’s death.

In the years following his trip to rehab, Dick has said that he relapsed into alcoholism numerous times. However, his battle with these demons came to an end one day when the taste of alcohol just randomly began making him ill. In 2008, Margie died after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. The two had maintained a close relationship since their divorce, and Dick was devastated when he heard the news. Only a year after Margie’s death, Michelle was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2009. She died soon after, spending her final days in a coma as the brokenhearted Dick sang her goodbyes. After two huge losses back to back, the elderly actor was understandably downtrodden. However, he continued to thrive.

Soon after Michelle’s death, Dick began dating Arlene Silver. Arlene Silver was a makeup artist that Dick met at a Screen Actors Guild Awards dinner. The couple made headlines when the press got wind of the fact that Dick was 46 years older than his new girlfriend. However, this age gap didn’t stop the two from getting married in 2012. Although Dick’s loved ones were initially skeptical of their father’s much younger new wife, she eventually won them over. The two have been successfully married since, and Dick has continued to find work in Hollywood.

After nearly a century, Dick has lived long enough to see many of his contemporaries and loved ones pass on. He holds a lot of regret about his nearly 40-year marriage to Margie, but that doesn’t stop him from doing his best with his current one. In his many decades of relationship experience, Dick has learned that it’s important to be able to relate to the person you’re trying to spend your life with. In the case of Arlene, it appears that the two share a mutual immature outlook on life that helps them stay young and happy. Perhaps Dick’s youthful personality is what has kept him so young over the years, despite the numerous hardships that he has faced.

At the age of 95, Dick Van Dyke is one of Hollywood’s most veteran performers. Over the course of his incredible career, he has performed in a number of iconic roles. Comment down below to share which role you think has defined the star’s career, or if you were surprised to learn that he didn’t have any dancing experience until the year he made his Broadway debut! As always, like this video to show your support, and subscribe and hit the notification bell if you’d like to be among the first to know when more Facts Verse videos are on their way!

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