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'McHale Navy' Star Ernest Borgnine And Ethel Merman Ended Their Marriage After 32 Days As They Couldn't Stand Each Other

September 9, 2019 17:05

Ernest Borgnine and Ethel Merman got married on June 27, 1964 in a star-studded ceremony.

Many celebrities including Bob Hope, Dick Van Dyke, and Angie Dickinson became witnesses to what turned out to be one of the shortest marriages known to Hollywood.

What went wrong between Ernest and Ethel?

After the wedding, the newlyweds went on a long honeymoon trip, which turned out disastrous for them. The Marty star recalled in an interview with Express that Merman was extremely jealous when people recognized him, but not her:

We went on our honeymoon from Beverly Hills to Hawaii to Kyoto, Tokyo and Hong Kong. During that time people knew me and they would say hi. I would introduce my wife Ethel Merman, and they'd say, 'Who?' 'You know, the great singer.' And they'd say, 'Oh sure, how do you do?'

Ernest quickly recognized he won't be able to deal with Ethel and immediately called the whole thing off:

She was getting angrier and angrier. Her ego had been hurt. When we were in Hawaii, she called her mother and dad and I heard on the telephone, 'This man has been terrible,' and this and that. When we got back to L.A. I said, 'This is it, I can't take it.' That was the end of it.

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However, from Ethel's point of view, it was Ernest who was completely unbearable. Tony Cointreau, one of her closest friends, revealed he had the Broadway star's diary, according to which Borgnine was using Merman for her money.

Ethel was absolutely convinced that her new husband wanted her for her money, which is why she was acting strange in his eyes.

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It was clear that Borgnine and Merman were a terrible match. The couple separated on August 7, just 32 days after tying the knot and filed for divorce on October 21 of the same year.

The McHale's Navy was married 5 times in total

Ernest Borgnine had to go through multiple ladies until he found his soulmate. The famous actor first 4 failed marriage were to Rhoda Kemins from 1949 till 1958, Katy Jurado from 1959 till 1963, Ethel Merman from July 1964 till October 1964, Donna Rancourt from 1965 till 1972.

Borgnine fifth and final wife became his life partner.

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Tova Traesnaes, whom Ernest married in 1973, stayed with the actor until his death in 2012.