The late Jerry Lee Lewis had an impressive career but it wasn’t always good press for the singer. In 1957, he married his cousin, Myra Williams, who was only 13 at the time. Jerry was 22. Now, Myra is 78 years old and is looking back on their relationship, both the good and bad times.
Myra’s teenage years were anything but ordinary, getting married and having two children at such a young age. Add in that their marriage was the thing to hurt Jerry’s career and it was all just too much. She explained, “I was the bad thing in his life. It was because of our marriage that his career hit the pavement. You know, you were judged for everything you did back then.”
Myra Williams talks about her controversial marriage to the late Jerry Lee Lewis
At the time, Jerry’s label stopped promoting him and radio stations took his music off the air. She added, “I was called the child bride, but I was the adult and Jerry was the child. When I look back on it, how can you defend yourself when you’re 13 years old? I mean there’s no excuse good enough for that to be OK.”
Myra said that while they were together she took care of everything. She was taking care of all of the business and financial decisions, even as a teenager. While a lot of their relationship was fun, Myra said that Jerry’s drug use ultimately broke up the marriage.
Myra shared, “His personality just became mean. And nasty. It was like a whole different man. Just bad, you know?” So, they divorced in 1970. Myra married briefly after and divorced again. However, she has been with her current husband, Richard Williams, for about 39 years. They own a real estate company in Atlanta but have since retired from day-to-day business.