American martial artist and actor Chuck Norris is a proud father of five children, including daughter Dina DiCiolli, a love child he did not know about for 26 years. Meet her.
Chuck Norris is a famous martial arts expert. He participated in several martial arts tournaments and emerged victorious in most of them. He also won the World Middleweight Karate Championship and defended the title five times.
Norris opened over 30 karate studios and taught several celebrities, including Steve McQueen and Priscilla Presley. Besides teaching celebrities, he was also a film star himself.
Chuck Norris as Cordell Walker on "Walker, Texas Ranger" circa 1995. [Left] | Portrait of Chuck Norris's daughter Dina DiCiolli. [Right] | Photo: Getty Images
A former U.S. Air Force officer, Norris starred in some hit movies, including "Way of the Dragon," where he starred alongside Bruce Lee. Other movies he starred in include "Missing in Action," "Code of Silence," and "The Delta Force." He also starred in the series "Walker, Texas Ranger."
Away from his career, Norris has been married twice in his lifetime. He tied the knot for the first time in December 1958 with his high school classmate Dianne Kay Holechek.
Chuck Norris and Gena O'Kelley during Michael Bolton Honored with a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for His Achievements in Music in Hollywood. | Photo: Getty Images
When they married, Norris was 18 while Holechek was 17. During their marriage, the couple had two sons: Mike, born in 1962, and Eric, born in 1964.
After 30 years of marriage, Norris and Holechek's union ended in divorce in 1989. The former couple had separated in 1988 during the filming of "The Delta Force 2."
Norris tied the knot for a second time nine years after his divorce from Holechek. On November 28, 1998, he married Gena O'Kelley, a former model who is 23 years younger than him.
Norris and O'Kelley have been happily married for 23 years, and the actor never turns down any opportunity to show her how much he loves her.
Last month, he celebrated their 23rd wedding anniversary with a heartwarming post on his Instagram page. Norris shared a cute photo showing him and his beautiful wife embracing each other lovingly. He captioned the post:
"My love, my life, my best friend, my world. Happy 23rd Anniversary to my beautiful wife that God blessed me with when we met 25 years ago. I love you with all my heart."
In April 2018, Norris shared a picture of himself and O'Kelley cuddling while posing. In the post's caption, he wrote: "Gena's more than my wife. She's also my best friend and business partner. We are blessed to live, love, and work together."
Norris is so dedicated and protective of his marriage and relationship with O'Kelley that he gave up his career to care for her after she became ill in 2017.
O'Kelley suffered from neck pain and kidney problems that she and Norris believed were caused by an injection she was given before an MRI scan in 2013.
O'Kelley said within hours after receiving the first injection; she felt as if her whole body was on fire and acid had passed through it.
Initially, the burning sensation was isolated, but it spread over her whole body. She had to lie in bed for five months and received round-the-clock medical attention. Norris was always by her side throughout the ordeal.
While speaking about his wife's ordeal, Norris said he had given up his film career to concentrate on her because his whole life was about keeping her alive.
The couple revealed they spent about $2 million on treatment, which infuriated them. Later, O'Kelley had to receive stem cell therapy.
Norris and his wife filed a lawsuit against the companies responsible for her reaction to gadolinium, the metal used in the contrast agent in the injection she received. The couple believed the injection had been poisoned.
Norris and Dina have gotten closer to each other since their reconnection.
Norris and O'Kelley are parents to twins Danielle Kelley and Dakota Alan, who they welcomed on August 30, 2001. The twins were born a month before their due date but arrived without complications.
Norris's twins with O'Kelley, in addition to his two kids with his first wife, Holechek, meant that he was supposed to have been a father of four children. However, the actor is a father of five. Norris made a shocking revelation in his book "Against All Odds: My Story."
He revealed he cheated on Holechek while he was married and fathered a child with another woman named Johanna. However, he did not know about the child until later. The love child is Dina DiCiolli, who was born in 1963.
Norris admitted to still feeling ashamed about lying to Johanna in the book as he never told her he was married. Then, he was stationed in California in the U.S. Air Force and had a brief fling with her.
Norris did not know Johanna got pregnant and gave birth to their daughter. He found out about it in 1991 when Dina wrote to him, claiming to be his biological daughter.
Dina had found out Norris was her father when she was 16 – she overheard her mom talking to a friend about him. Later, Johanna confirmed to Dina that Norris was indeed her father.
She explained that the actor was married and had children, and she did not want to disrupt his life. However, Dina remained adamant and got in touch with Norris. He agreed to meet her and Johanna.
Norris recalled not needing DNA or blood tests to confirm if Dina was his daughter. When he saw her, he went to her and wrapped his arms around her while tears flowed freely from their eyes. In the book, he wrote that he felt he had known her all his life at that moment.
Dina is a recruitment consultant at Zilis LLC. She is happily married to Damien DiCiolli and is a proud mom of three children: daughter Gabi Boardman and sons Dante and Eli.
Also, in June 2012, Dina revealed that her son Dante was doing well in the South Carolina Regional Soccer Tournament. She said he was performing well as a goalkeeper for his soccer team and making incredible saves.
Gabi is also happily married. She tied the knot with the love of her life in October 2018 and shared pictures from the ceremony on Facebook.
A picture she shared showed her and her husband posing with her family members. Norris and his wife, O'Kelley, are featured in the snapshot alongside Dina, her husband, and their two sons, Eli and Dante.
Norris and Dina have gotten closer to each other since their reconnection. In August 2015, he shared a picture of him, O'Kelley, and their twins posing with Dina, her husband, and their sons, Dante and Eli. He captioned the post:
"Here's another family photo from Kauai. This time with our daughter Dina, her husband Damien and their boys Dante & Eli."
"Being a father is one of God's greatest blessings a man can experience."
The "Missing in Action" star has many reasons to be proud. His five children are doing well for themselves. For instance, Mike is an actor like his grandfather and has starred in over 30 films. He is also a director. Mike is married and has three kids.
Eric was a Hollywood stuntman before becoming a stunt coordinator. He is also a movie director and a father of four children.
Danielle and Dakota are also actors. They starred in "Yes Dear" alongside their mom and dad. Danielle also starred in "Walker, Texas Ranger" with her dad and played Walker's daughter.
Norris has a happy home, which is beautiful to see. The movie star and martial artist has done well for himself and should be proud of his remarkable achievements in his career and as a family man.