Here's Why Dolly Parton Keeps Her Marriage out of the Limelight
Country legend Dolly Parton chose to keep her relationship with Carl Thomas Dean extremely private because he wouldn't like to be a Hollywood husband.
Parton met Dean in 1964 when she first came to Nashville. She was 18 and he was 21. Then, after two years, on May 30, 1966, the couple got married at a church in Ringgold, Georgia.
"When we're together, we're really good friends. I do believe that that is the key to most all relationships that last a long time. You've gotta be great friends."
Parton and Dean decided to go out of town so Tennessee newspapers wouldn't provide details regarding the wedding ceremony. The only people in attendance were Parton's mom, Avie Lee, and the preacher and his wife.
It became apparent that the country icon's husband had no enthusiasm for the entertainment industry even before she achieved fame.
Dean, who is retired from running an asphalt road-paving business in Nashville, has always avoided attention and infrequently goes with his wife to any occasions.
Parton credits their independence to the success of their five decades-long relationship. In an interview with Taste of Country, Parton said:
"You can't be in each other's face all the time. Actually, I think that has been the best formula for us, the fact that we appreciate each other when we are together. We don't have to be together all the time."
"He's a very independent person. I'm a very independent person. He's proud of what I am and what I do. I'm proud of him for who he is and what he does and how we do it."
She continued: "When we're together, we're really good friends. I do believe that that is the key to most all relationships that last a long time. You've gotta be great friends."
"And you've gotta be able to be accepting and just kind of know that you're not gonna change that person, because you married him because you loved 'em for what they were. So don't start getting into that relationship and then try to change people."
Parton and Dean have no children of their own, but they are focused on helping support the award-winning singer's large family. They have worked with numerous kids through her charity as well.
In May 2016, the legendary singer announced that she and her husband would renew their vows in honor of their 50th wedding anniversary.
Parton, who has composed over 3,000 songs throughout her career, rose to stardom with the success of her album debut, "Hello, I'm Dolly," in 1967. She is the most honored female country performer of all time for achieving unprecedented success in country music
Among her several accolades are nine Grammy awards, 10 Country Music Association Awards, seven Academy of Country Music Awards, and three American Music Awards.