Kenny Rogers’ Widow Says She’s Found Love Again
Kenny Rogers died three years ago, and now his widow, Wanda, has revealed that she’s found love again.
In a new interview with PEOPLE, Wanda Rogers shared that Kenny knew he wouldn’t be around forever and wanted her to fall in love again after he was gone. Wanda, 56, told the publication that she has moved on and with Kenny’s blessing. She recalled the moment he shared his wishes with her.
“He said, ‘I’m not going to be here forever. I want you to be happy,'” she said, recalling the moment he turned the TV off and turned to her. “‘You’re young. I want you to have a full life past me.’ And of course I was like, ‘What? I don’t want to talk about that. Turn the TV back on.'”
Wanda said it took her some time to be willing to move on after her husband’s death, but thought it was important to show her children, twin sons Justin and Jordan, that life goes on.
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“I’m dating someone very special,” she says. “Kenny gave me his very best and he wanted me to move on and be happy. That’s a really big man to be able to say those words and mean it. I think it just shows the kind of guy he was.”
Wanda didn’t disclose her new beau’s name or many details about him, but did say that they had previously been introduced by a friend who had dated her sister years ago.
“He introduced me to a friend of his and he said, ‘Look, if you don’t date each other, you’ll be friends forever. He is going to be in your friend arsenal forever,'” she said. “And we became friends at first.”
Their friendship blossomed, due in part to his similarities to Kenny.
“It’s funny because a few of my friends said, ‘I just really feel like Kenny’s a part of this somehow.’ And I know that sounds weird,” she says. “[But] he tells our kids, ‘I’m not your dad. No one will ever take the place of your dad, but I’m here as your friend forever.'” She continues: “It’s been big shoes to step into after I was with this icon for all these years in a very special relationship. But it’s really been an easy relationship.
Kenny Rogers had been married to Wanda for 23 years before he died in March 2020 at the age of 81.
Kenny Rogers first met Wanda Miller when she was working as a waitress at an Atlanta restaurant. Rogers, who was there on a blind date, later called the restaurant to inquire about Wanda. He left his number with the manager and asked him to pass it along.
“I came in the next day and they all said, Kenny Rogers called asking about you,” she said. “They gave me a piece of paper with a number on it. I threw it away. I thought it was a joke. They dug it out of the trash and said it was for real.”
Wanda eventually called the singer, leading to five years of dating before they tied the knot in 1997.
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Kenny Rogers was married four times before Wanda came in to his life. He shared two sons with Wanda, twins Justin and Jordan, and has three children from his previous relationships: Carole Lynne (64), Kenny Jr. (59) and Christopher Cody (41).