Who Was Anna Nicole Smith's First Husband? She Got Married at 17
Late actress, model, and television personality Anna Nicole Smith was known for her marriage to an octogenarian, but who was her first husband?
Late model, actress, and television personality Anna Nicole Smith's life has existed in the spotlight since her first 1992 Playboy photoshoot. The starlet rocketed into the public eye following her marriage to J. Howard Marshall was 86 years old at the time of their meeting. Following Marshall's death and then Smith's, the subject of her personal life has routinely reappeared in documentaries and films about her life.
Before she married J. Howard Marshall, who was Anna Nicole Smith's first husband? Keep reading for everything you need to know about Billy Wayne Smith, explained.
Who was Anna Nicole Smith's first husband?
Before she was "Anna Nicole Smith," Anna Nicole was born Vicki Lynn Hogan in Houston, Texas. She eventually moved to Mexia, Texas, to live with her maternal aunt as a teen, where she met her first husband. Anna Nicole dropped out of high school her sophomore year and began working at Jim's Krispy Fried Chicken.
According to People, Anna Nicole met Billy Wayne Smith when she was 17, and he was 16 — Billy was a cook at Jim's Krispy Fried Chicken. The pair married in 1985. Their son, Daniel Wayne Smith, was born in 1986.
Anna Nicole's mother, Virgie Arthur, told Daily Mail in 2017 that when she met Billy, he was "a sweet young man, very timid and shy." Virgie added, "It made her mad because he didn't pay attention to her. She told me, 'I'm going to get that boy, just watch, he's going to marry me.'"
Their marriage did not last long; by 1987, the duo had already separated. However, they reportedly didn't officially divorce until 1993. Virgie also told Daily Mail that after Daniel was born, Anna Nicole started working at Red Lobster, a job she eventually abandoned to begin working as a stripper at the Executive Suite club in Houston.
It was during her separation from Billy that Anna Nicole met J. Howard Marshall. In 1991, she was working as a stripper when Marshall began to pursue her, resulting in a two-year-long affair in which the petroleum tycoon reportedly showered her with gifts and begged her to marry him. In 1994, a year after her divorce was finalized, the two married in a ceremony that shocked the U.S.
At the time of their marriage, Marshall was 89, and Smith was 26.
What happened to Daniel Wayne Smith?
Tragically, Daniel Wayne Smith died of an accidental drug overdose at 20 on Sept. 10, 2006. As a teen, he had been featured on his mother's reality show, The Anna Nicole Show, and often played bit parts in her films, including Skyscraper and To The Limit.
Even more tragically, Daniel died in the maternity ward of Doctors Hospital in Nassau, Bahamas, where he had witnessed the birth of his half-sister, Dannielynn Birkhead, per People.