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From Kingpins wife to Steve Harvey’s wife – about the piquant past of Marjorie Harvey

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Marjorie has been in the spotlight in one way or another since the late ‘90s, and while she may nowadays appear to be just another Hollywood wife with a classic day-to-day life of glamour and massive spending, many would be shocked to know that she may also have helped operate a drug ring involving millions of dollars.

The mention of her name will conjure up the wholesome family photos of her, Steve Harvey and their children, while the shadow of her dark past lays buried deep beneath public information and common knowledge. Conversely, one can’t be blamed for not being aware of who she used to be, since Marjorie has gone to great lengths in order to hide her skeletons.

Unfortunately for her public image, Marjorie’s former partners in crime are still around to this day, with a big story to share. It’s also possible that her former drug kingpin ex-husband is simply looking to pick a publicity crumb, since having been associated with Marjorie is his only public claim to fame. Regardless of his incentive, the narrative he alleges fits with certain case files of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA).

The cocaine princess

Marjorie Elaine Bridges was born under the sign of Libra on 10 October 1964, in Memphis, Tennessee USA, to mixed-race parentage – her Caucasian mother Doris Bridges, and African-American father of an unknown name and profession. As for any difficulties that may have nudged her in the wrong direction, all sources point to her having a relatively normal childhood.

Her education is thought to have been somewhat extensive, but the details on this are muddy. Some believe that she enrolled into the University of Memphis following matriculation, but there’s no telling what she studied there, or whether she ever graduated. Marjorie herself, understandably, doesn’t particularly enjoy detailing her past to the media.

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The slip into criminality

Whatever job she may have taken after college, the subsequent events in Marjorie’s life led her to the company of a certain Jim Townsend, who was making really good money at the time and had wide social influence. It was later determined that this power came from the extensive drug ring that made him Memphis’ cocaine kingpin.

It is not entirely clear how Marjorie and Jim met, but it’s possible that they may have been through mutual acquaintances in the city. Some believe that Marjorie was involved in the local drug scene pretty early on, which would’ve allowed her to eventually make Jim’s acquaintance as she moved up the ladder. It’s also possible that they met through friends or family, given that they both grew up in Memphis.

Assuming they met through mutual acquaintances, it’s pretty clear why they would’ve been drawn to each other, as he was powerful and enchanted by beauty, and she was a beauty enchanted by power. Marjorie claims to this day that she hadn’t been aware of his illegal activities until the day he was charged in the court of law, but common sense would indicate that to be highly unlikely, as they spent considerable time together.

If it’s to be believed that Marjorie finished college before setting out into the depths of Memphis, she would’ve been around 22 years old at the start of their relationship, which sets the date at 1986. It’d then be ludicrous to assume that Marjorie never even had a hint of what he was up to all the way throughout their approximate four years of dating, and many years later, Jim tells a different story.

He explicitly claims that Marjorie was one of the most important cogwheels in the well-oiled drug machine that kept him on top of Memphis for a number of years. With everything in hindsight, the most likely flow of events was that Jim believed that he’d found a soulmate in Marjorie, and ended up trusting her completely at some point.

The two enjoyed a rather loving relationship for a few years, prior to marrying in an extravagant ceremony in 1990. Probably not for a lack of trying, they never managed to conceive a child, which in the long run made Jim just that much easier to drop when the time was right.

The bust

Due to the magnitude of Jim’s cocaine empire, both the FBI and the DEA put a significant number of operatives on and off the field in relation to his case, all of whom kept careful watch on his men and their dealings. Many undercover agents were present as well, engaging in infiltration and other clandestine activities for months on end in order to accumulate evidence.

Drug lords are notoriously distrustful of pretty much everyone around them, and for good reason. If any of their men are caught, they usually have little to no information to divulge that would assist in harming the general operation of the ring. This also removes any personal stakes from the endeavor, making the kingpin immune to any blackmail from the authorities after they apprehend his associates.

However, Marjorie became Jim’s weak spot over the years, and some say that Jim would’ve received a much lighter sentence if not for his boundless affection towards her. The agents spent months building evidence against individual members, connecting the dots, and creating a solid case for the courts.

They still needed something that was more solid than pictures and rumors though, and that’s where a brilliant undercover agent came around in 1992, who managed to persuade Jim that he would be able to secure a massive shipment for Townsend’s organization to sell off.

The kingpin eventually took the bait and met the agent at a location that unbeknownst to him was swarming with police, and then agreed to the purchase of 40kgs (88lbs) of cocaine, all the while being recorded by the agent’s wire and multiple hidden cameras.

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This evidence was as solid as it gets, and so he was arrested on the spot and charged with multiple serious crimes. That notwithstanding, Jim still had a massive amount of money at his disposal, and access to some of the best lawyers in the country. The FBI and DEA were in for a lengthy court process that could go either way, which is something they really wanted to avoid.

The agents then presented Jim with a mountain of evidence against Marjorie, which detailed her criminal activities to a very wide extent. It’s safe to say, had she ever been charged with what they had, she would still be behind bars in 2023. Townsend was ready to sacrifice everything and everyone, save for Marjorie, and so he accepted the deal, pleading guilty to all charges so that the FBI and DEA would completely ignore Marjorie.

Of course, believing that they were meant to be, Jim told her of this plan and asked her to wait for him, promising to try and appeal his sentence as many times as necessary to eventually get out of prison, in spite of his initial sentencing to life without parole.

Marjorie did everything she could to get Jim to accept the deal, promising that she would wait for him as long as necessary. Blinded by emotion, Townsend went to prison, potentially until his death, with a smile on his face, trusting that her feelings for him were just as pure. He was wrong though.

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From one ring into another

Lo and behold, not long after Jim’s conviction, Marjorie began finding it increasingly difficult to stay in the marriage. He still had significant power in Memphis, however, and it would’ve been unprofitable to abandon the business just yet. With immunity from the FBI and the DEA, she was able to continue engaging in her regular practices for a while, making significant money from the drug trade at everyone else’s expense.

Not even five years into their marriage, Marjorie filed for divorce from Jim, whose entire motivation for getting out was exactly this never happening. As a cherry on top, at the time she was already dating his first cousin Darnell Brooks.

Darnell was a kingpin in his own right, now also with a big piece of Jim’s former territory, and some of the experienced men previously under his command who were able to avoid the massive drug bust. At this point in the story, it wouldn’t be far-fetched to conclude that the only thing Marjorie was married to was the flow of money.

The details surrounding their relationship and subsequent marriage are incredibly scarce, with the only real bit of information from that part of Marjorie’s life being that she gave birth to three of Darnell’s children – Morgan, Jason and Lori. Since it seems like Darnell literally fell through the ground at some point, most of the details surrounding Marjorie’s second marriage are up for assumption.

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The most likely final outcome, with Jim’s unfortunate story in mind, is that something quite similar could’ve happened. However, there’s no record of Darnell Brooks from that time being imprisoned on drug charges, which opens the door to much more grim possibilities.

Knowing how easily people disappear in the underworld, some theorists give credence to the idea that a rival kingpin ordered a hit, but his family was left intact. This is one of the only explanations as to why Marjorie just gave up on the drug world after Darnell, as she was probably scared of remaining involved.

It could also be that the DEA and the FBI had amassed evidence on her that was well beyond the scope of what was initially thrown out of her file, and there was no one to protect her for the second time.

Whatever may have happened throughout the undotted i’s, Marjorie literally went from drug lord to drug lord, took charge in their operations and engaged in heavy criminal activity, raised children in a criminal household while making drugs readily available to their peers, evaded the law on pretty much every single violation, and ultimately came out with an almost squeaky clean reputation and a lot of money. Taking all this into account, even the most dedicated fans of today would have a hard time discrediting the idea of Marjorie Elaine Bridges being a very cold, calculated and selfish individual.

A comedian’s innocent wife

Steve Harvey laid eyes on Marjorie for the first time in 1987, while he was performing at a comedy club in her birthplace. The comedian was immediately enchanted by her, even going as far as to state that he had no idea who she is, but that he will certainly marry her one day.

Marjorie herself wasn’t all that impressed by him at the time, and most who know of her past chalk that up to Harvey not being a drug lord, as she was heavily involved with Jim at that time. Almost a decade down the line, she suddenly found the highly successful comedian that he became quite attractive.

The two hit it off in no time, but it was going to be a bumpy road. Unlike her exes, Steve didn’t have to hide anything about his lifestyle, and being in his presence as a woman was far from anything frowned upon. As a result, he had marriage opportunities left and right wherever he went, as well as one-night stands.

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This made Steve an exceptionally difficult man for Marjorie to fully seduce, which must’ve been the first time she had to work really hard for something. She was apparently doing a lousy job as well, now with three children from a previous marriage to boot, since Harvey ended up cheating on her and dooming the relationship.

However, it looks like the guilt that came with the act did the trick for Marjorie, and she finally broke through to Steve. He subsequently ended up just as enchanted as Jim, if not even more so, vowing to make it up to his ex- and give her the best life that he possibly could. He adopted those three children after they married in 2007, and has apparently remained deeply in love with her ever since.

Running from the past

The whole charade would’ve worked out perfectly for Marjorie, if not for a man so powerful she couldn’t possibly even approach him – Barack Obama. The former US president himself gave clemency to Marjorie’s first husband in July 2015, whose words against her were completely insignificant until that moment.

Jim was adamant that, in spite of the perfect mother figure that she now portrays for the whole world, Marjorie was instrumental in running the drug ring, and that only he knows the true extent of her criminal involvement. If not for his pardon, Marjorie’s entire past would’ve been permanently forgotten.

Townsend is in the process of publishing his memoirs, two thirds of which he wrote in prison. Entitled “Snakes in the Garden: The Untold Story of the Life Of Jim (aka Jimmy) L. Townsend Part One”, a big chunk of their story is set to be released on 1 July 2023. It’s expected that the book will have a significant impact on Marjorie’s career, threatening to bring down the public image she’s so carefully cultivated over the years with her second husband.

As the Managing Editor at The Legit, I direct a dynamic team dedicated to creating rich content that profiles the lives and accomplishments of influential figures. My commitment to detail and storytelling drives the production of biographies that truly engage our audience. I manage all aspects of the editorial process, from conducting thorough research to crafting vivid narratives, all while ensuring the accuracy and quality of our work. At The Legit, our goal is to offer our readers comprehensive profiles that provide deep insights into the realms of business, entertainment, and more. Through diligent research and engaging storytelling, we highlight the exceptional journeys and achievements of those who both inspire and intrigue us.

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How Cornelia Marie Survived a Fire, a Lawsuit, and a Pandemic

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Cornelia Marie is one of the most recognized commercial fishing vessels used in the freezing Alaskan waters, because of its participation in the hit reality television series, “Deadliest Catch,” aired on Discovery Channel. It was under the command of Captain Phil Harris for many years until he died in 2010. Aside from the immense danger F/V Cornelia Marie encountered during the crabbing season, it also underwent a series of misfortunes such as a potential fire accident and a government shutdown due to the pandemic along with being mentioned in lawsuits and scandals. It was nothing short of a miracle that it stayed afloat despite the many incidents that could have sunk the fishing vessel literally and figuratively many times in the past two decades. A recent scandal may change the shipping vessel’s luck, and fans believe that they may never see it again on TV.

The Origins of F/V Cornelia Marie

Contrary to what newer “Deadliest Catch” fans believed, the F/V Cornelia Marie wasn’t named after Captain Phil Harris’ first wife, even if the fishing vessel would be forever identified with him. There was a real-life Cornelia Marie, a native Alaskan married to Ralph Collins who was in the commercial fishing business. Sometime in 1989, the couple invested in a $1.5 million-worth 106-foot crabbing boat, which they had built by known shipbuilder Elmo Horton in Bayou La Batre, Alabama. It was powered by twin Mitsubishi engines with 630 horsepower, and could hold 25,800 gallons of fuel. Ralph named it as such to pay tribute to his wife who deserved it as she was the one handling the accounts books of their fishing business.

His initial plans for the F/V Cornelia Marie were to sail to Seattle by going to the Gulf of Mexico and then passing through the Panama Canal up to the West Coast. However, the US invaded Panama to topple its dictator, Manuel Noriega, and for military reasons, the Panama Canal was closed that one night in December of 1989. It resumed operations the next day, but the fishing vessel was stuck there for a little over a week, and by the time it reached Seattle, the crabbing season was well underway. Ralph became its temporary captain as there wasn’t any time to find a new one, however, staying at sea for long periods of time wasn’t good for their young family, so they looked for someone they could trust at the helm of the boat. They found Phil Harris, and when they offered him a quarter stake of ownership as well as a chance to run a newly-built state-of-the-art boat, he was stupefied. Ralph said that he had seen others easily walk away to better offers, so he made sure that the new captain would be a part owner of the boat to persuade him to stay as long as possible.

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Cornelia Marie and Phil Harris

When Captain Phil Harris was hired to command F/V Cornelia Marie at the end of 1990, the owners didn’t realize that he lacked a formal technical engineering education. They only knew that he was knowledgeable about it, and that he had this in-your-face confidence, and Phil was smart enough to hire the most competent engineer he could find to help him run the boat. Most of what he knew was from experience and gut instinct. He was astute enough to learn every single piece of gadget or equipment inside the boat, so it was uncanny that he would know, even before his crew or engineer did, if something was wrong with the ship just by its sound. During the early years, Ralph would sometimes be the skipper of the boat when in halibut season, but when it was time for crab hunting, Phil took the wheel.

Scariest moments in F/V Cornelia Marie

Accidents do happen, but everything is scarier if one is in the middle of a wide ocean. It reminded everyone in the crab fleet of the hazardous aspect of their profession, but Phil would often tell his sons, ‘You can’t take it personally or it will drive you insane.’ However, his son said that one couldn’t help but take it personally, especially if dead bodies were floating around!

Swept overboard

Those who hadn’t been onboard a crab fishing vessel in the Bering Seas couldn’t relate to the type of risk that the fishermen faced. Phil knew that his sons should accept it if they wanted to continue in this profession. One time, a deckhand was swept overboard, and it took about five minutes for the rest of the crew to realize that he was gone. However, with the kind of waves that they encountered, no one could find him and all they could see was empty waters around the boat. It was the reason why Captain Phil would constantly observe from the wheelhouse window just to check if everyone was where they were supposed to be.

Confronted gigantic waves head on

Another scary moment Phil had aboard Cornelia Marie was when he was about to hand over the wheelhouse to his relief skipper, and they were confronted by a huge wave. They both saw it but there was nothing they could do. It popped open the glass window, so gallons and gallons of water entered and even knocked down the lights. It wasn’t Phil’s first time to experience it, because he was still in his teens working for his father when a similar thing happened. He had learned not to panic, so he just took on a hammer and boarded up the window with plywood. The fishing vessel had encountered these kinds of waves for many years, and while it was dangerous, it had become a normal occurrence for him. However, Phil never thought they would face a gigantic wave that they estimated to be over 100 feet high. As he knew it was coming, he made sure that it wouldn’t hit the boat on its side, so he collided with it head-on. The crew described it as if they were in a car driving on a steep mountain road going up to the peak but with no road at the other side so it was like falling off a cliff. Cornelia Marie fell loudly and broke the boat’s two solid heavy steel rudders.

Oil leakage in the engine room

During the 11th season of “Deadliest Catch,” Josh Harris took over as co-Captain of F/V Cornelia Marie, along with his father’s long-time buddy, Engineer Casey McManus. One of the things a captain wouldn’t want to hear from the radio was that there was a fire somewhere in the boat, specifically coming from the engine bay. It smelled of smoke and fire down there, but Josh immediately checked it out and saw that there was oil spillage in the room. They all knew it was a dangerous moment and so the fishing stopped so they could all focus on the problem. The oil line blew, and fire could easily flare up if it wasn’t fixed immediately. In these situations, the technical know-how and experience of co-Captain Casey McManus came into play. Josh said, ‘This is the reason why I’m not a full-fledged captain because of situations like these. I don’t even know what’s going on down there.’ Flames were averted, and they didn’t need to make an emergency stop in their crabbing operation to return to town.

Crabbing shut down due to the Covid-19 pandemic

One would think that the crab fishing industry wouldn’t be affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, considering it would involve being in the vast waters of the Bering Sea off Alaska. Each year, the industry would depend on the annual surveys conducted by the government as they advocated sustainable fisheries management in Alaska. These surveys were the cornerstone of how the industry would proceed annually, on what limitations the fishermen would have in their harvest. Unfortunately, due to uncertainties brought about by the pandemic, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in May 2020 reported that they’d canceled certain surveys. As a result, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game made an historic announcement that the red king crab fishery would be closed for the 2021-2022 season – the F/V Cornelia Marie captains then made the necessary adjustments to their fishing activities. The danger just went up many notches, as they hunted for other species in the sea, but they didn’t have any choice since their livelihood was at stake.

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Fishing operation expenses soared higher

The operating expenses for Cornelia Marie went up just like most of the other fishing boats in the Bering Sea. It was hard flying in due to flight regulations, plus getting crew members to join was another matter, since most people were afraid of contracting the virus; they needed to pay up to 10 times the usual rate so they could get crew. It was even harder with restrictions on getting in and out of processing plants. To make it easier for Josh Harris, he reached out to Shane, who was Phil Harris’ son from his first relationship. Josh idolized his older brother and was grateful Shane agreed to help them out.

Golden King Crab fishing at a deeper and more dangerous level

With red crab fishing out of the equation, co-Captains Josh and Casey sailed out to hunt for golden king crabs as an alternative source of income, or else file for bankruptcy. To get these species, they needed to use 10 shots of the line instead of the regular two lines that they used for red crabs. What they normally did in red crab fishing was dangerous enough, but golden king crab fishing was harder, as they needed to place the pots out in the water 10 times deeper, such a complicated process that took a long time to do. One golden king crab pot set-up was equal to having to set up seven red crab pots. The whole crew wasn’t ready for it, and they all found it creepy and tiring.

Cornelia Marie and Time Bandit joined forces

If putting down the crab pots in the deep water was extremely exhausting, hauling them up was even more so, and quite tricky as well. As a result, they lost some of them so they needed to do it differently. Since they were all quite new to this type of fishing, the Cornelia Marie crew asked for help from another fishing vessel, the Time Bandit. Its captain, Jonathan Hillstrand, was cool enough to give them a hand. The captains of both vessels came up with a plan, which seemed great on paper, but Josh Harris said, ‘To be quite honest with you, I didn’t quite understand what Jonathan and Casey had going on.’ He said that they had all witnessed crazier things in their boats, but the plan worked out wonderfully without anyone getting hurt or ending up in a body bag. The funny thing was that the production crew of “Deadliest Catch” asked them if they could do it again at a slower pace, but they all said no, as it was just a one-time deal. The co-Captains even told them there was no way they could slow it down – it was as if telling them to jump out of a car at 60 miles per hour.

The scandals and lawsuits surrounding the Harris Brothers

The F/V Cornelia Marie had always been associated with the late Phil Harris, so any controversial news that came out about his sons, the fishing vessel was always mentioned. Also, both his sons, Josh and Jake, worked in the fishing boat after he passed away. The legendary captain might have been wild during his heyday, but he had never been in serious scandals that involved law enforcement.

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Jake Harris was in and out of jail

Growing up in a dysfunctional home and without a great role model, Phil’s younger son Jake turned to alcohol and drugs to cope with his problems. Just a week after his father died in 2010, Jake was arrested for driving under the influence. He crashed Phil’s BMW 3 series into another car, after driving erratically and with a suspended license, so spent a night in jail before he was bailed out.

The second time he was arrested was in 2017 for drug possession and theft. He ditched the married woman he was having an affair with after spending the night in a hotel, which wouldn’t have been a problem if he hadn’t taken her car. When the police caught up with him, they found illegal drugs on him such as meth and Xanax. He failed to attend the subsequent hearing, and so the judge issued an arrest warrant.

His run-ins with the law didn’t stop there, as Jake was involved in a police chase after he refused to present his ID when he was confronted by park rangers in a state park. He looked unkempt and out of it that when he bolted out, and they chased after him; apparently, he had heroin with him along with a stolen firearm. He was arrested and sentenced to 18 months imprisonment. He was also required to install an ignition interlock mechanism in whatever car he was to drive after completing his jail sentence. After he was out of prison, it didn’t take long for him to be re-arrested for DUI.

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Josh Harris was fired from “Deadliest Catch”

Cornelia Marie’s absence in the latest season of “Deadliest Catch” sparked curiosity among fans, as most of them wanted to see Josh Harris continue the legacy of their father. Some of them thought that the boat’s absence might have something to do with the younger Harris, because he was the one who was always in trouble, so fans were shocked when it was reported that Josh Harris was fired from the reality TV series. Several speculations surfaced, but nobody was prepared for the exact reason why his services were terminated. Apparently, a report came out in September 2022 that one of the favorite captains from “Deadliest Catch” was a pedophile.

The reports said that Josh Harris was embroiled in a sexual abuse case dating back to 1998. At that time he was around 15 years old, and it was the mother of the girl who reported the abuse to the police. The entertainment site, Factz, wrote, ‘Josh Harris digitally, vaginally and orally raped a 4-year-old girl 7/14/1998.’ He was able to commit the nefarious act because the victim was a neighbor, and the daughter of a deckhand. While semen was found on the scene during the investigation, Josh wasn’t arrested immediately since DNA processing wasn’t that advanced yet. It took the investigators quite a while to make a case against him. As a minor, Josh was initially put into house confinement under the watchful eyes of his father and stepmother, and charged with Fourth Degree Assault and Communicating with a Minor for Immoral Purposes. He was imprisoned for nine months, and was ordered to undergo a psychological sexual examination.

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Discovery Channel was one of the last people to know about it, but once it came to light, they quietly cut ties with Josh Harris and removed the spin-off series in which he featured back in 2022 from the menu program of its streaming service.

The F/V Cornelia Marie survived all the misfortunes and challenges that came its way in the past, but many people believed that this incident might figuratively bury the fishing vessel at the bottom of the sea, never to resurface.

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How rich are Ben and Erin Napier? Health Update

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Whether they’re renovating an old house or a whole town, it’s always a pleasure to see Ben and Erin Napier on our TV screens. Ever since the launch of their show “Home Town”, the couple has been bringing houses back to life all around Laurel, Mississippi by combining their love for antique styles with modernity.

While Erin and Ben have gained hearts everywhere due to their light-hearted personalities, sweet love story, and family, they’re also admirable for their work, the stable business they’ve built through it, and all the hardships they’ve faced to get where they are today.

So where are the Napiers now and how did they get there? Stay here to learn more about Ben and Erin’s whereabouts, including their net worth, fame, their story, and current shows.

How Rich Are They?

Erin and Ben Napier have become widely popular for their sense of style and charisma on screen. That being said, the couple has gained more than only fame and followers, but also led them to amass a net worth of $5 million combined, according to online reports.

This fortune partially comes from their career on TV, which includes their brand show “Home Town” and its spin-offs “Home Town Takeover” and “Ben’s Workshop”, on top of landing some tremendous advertising deals thanks to it, as seen on their social media.

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Nonetheless, a huge part of their fortune comes from their several active businesses, including the well-known retailer Laurel Mercantile, the furniture and tools maker Scotsman Co and Scotsman Manufacturing. All of these companies were opened years after the Napiers’ rise to fame, as before that Erin and Ben owned the now-disappeared wedding and event boutique Lucky Luxe. As well, Ben was a church minister before becoming a TV personality.

All in all, Ben and Erin had done an excellent job at not only becoming one of the most well-known house renovators on TV, but also at earning  a modest fortune doing what they love.

What Are Their Businesses About?

Although we know Erin and Ben Napier for their work as house renovators, they do more than that when cameras are off. For a start, Laurel Mercantile is a retailer of lifestyle and decorative items, opened in 2016 by the Napiers in Laurel. The company is a renewal of the original Laurel Mercantile, which opened in 1901 to serve as one of the biggest goods suppliers in town, before its closure in 1930.

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The couple also owns Scotsman Co, a woodwork and manufacturer where Ben turns his love for woodwork into authentic pieces of usable furniture, and other home items. The name is in honor of Ben’s Scottish heritage, and has turned into an international sensation thanks to its features in “Home Town” and its spin-offs.

Scotsman Co sells its items online and at Scotsman General Store, located next to Laurel Mercantile’s second store location opened in 2018.

Last but not least, Ben and Erin are the proud owners of Scotsman Manufacturing, which produces most of the items sold through Laurel Mercantile. Founding a manufacturing company is a step forward in accomplishing Erin and Ben’s goal of selling American-made products only.

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Health Update

It’s no secret that Erin and Ben Napier have gone through their fair share of hardships, especially when it comes to health. For several years into their marriage, Ben and Erin had been unable to welcome any children due to health issues on her side, resulting from a perforated appendix.

Nonetheless, that seems to be a thing of the past now, as the couple happily welcomed two daughters after Erin was completely cured of her illness. As well, Erin underwent throat surgery in late 2022, but has recovered just fine from it, and seems to be significantly well in most health-related aspects these days.

On his part, Ben doesn’t have any long-lasting and serious health problems as far as is known, though in April 2023 he suffered a shoulder injury which left him confined to bed for a while.

According to Erin, Ben had some problems involving his rotator cuff, bone spur, and cartilage, though further details about whatever happened to him weren’t revealed outside of the fact he had to undergo weeks of therapy and use a sling. Even so, Ben appeared content in the pics posted by his wife, as she and their daughters were taking care of him while he was confined to home during his recovery.

What Is Erin Napier’s Illness About?

While the Napiers aren’t extremely secretive about their personal issues, Erin’s now-cured illness is one of those topics that the couple rarely talks about.

As it happened, from the age of 19, Erin experienced intense abdominal physical pain and fever, a condition which significantly worsened as time passed. Despite seeing several doctors, no one was able to give her clear answers for years, leaving Erin with the terrible uncertainty of not knowing what was going on with her.

It wasn’t until she underwent exploratory surgery in 2014 that doctors found out that Erin was suffering from a perforated appendix, which healed itself by spreading tissue all over her organs. Doctors had been unable to find out she was suffering from this condition due to how rare it was, but it was finally time for Erin to turn the page of this chapter of her life after so many years.

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While Erin’s pain was gone along with her appendix, the situation resulted in some mental health issues for Erin, such as having ‘extreme fear’ and ‘preoccupation with sickness’, as she confessed on Instagram in 2022: ‘My brain, without my permission, sets off on a fight or flight mission to save my life, when my life is not in any danger at all’, she wrote.

Despite the many problems caused by long-lasting health issues, Erin’s overcome them all.

Children

Even though she recovered well from her perforated appendix removal in 2014, Erin was told that the possibility of becoming pregnant was an unlikely one. Regarding her feelings at the time, she told People: ‘Not knowing is always the biggest hurdle for me to overcome. I like to have proof, and we had no proof that I would be able to have kids.’

Given all of Erin’s problems conceiving and the health-related hardships she faced, it was a big surprise for her and Ben to find out she was pregnant with their first child on 2017’s Mother’s Day. Although some small bits of their journey to become parents can be seen in “Home Town” second season, the couple kept the news about their first baby low key for several months, until finally making the big announcement in October that year.

 

In January 2018, the pair happily welcomed their daughter Helen, who was named in honor of Erin’s grandmother. Nonetheless, the surprises weren’t over for the Napiers, as the news of having a second baby was also unexpected, only finding out about it when Erin started developing sudden allergies. Their second daughter named Mae was born in May 2021, and was another happy addition into the family.

What Is Going On With The Napiers?

A lot has been going for the Napiers in recent times – early in 2022, they released the third show of their franchise entitled “Home Town Kickstarter”, which focused on renovations in six towns around the US, looking to preserve the historical value of those buildings and bring them to new life. As if that wasn’t enough, the Napiers also starred in the two online-exclusive series “Talkin’ Shop” and “Erin’spired”, and in April 2023, the pair celebrated “Home Town”s reaching the 100th episode milestone.

The Napiers’ happiness also extends to their private life, as they’ve also recently finished renovations of their second home on the outskirts of their hometown Laurel. As they showed during a sixth season episode of “Home Town” aired in December 2022, they bought the 1930s house in mid-2021, but a lot of changes were needed to turn it into the family’s dream house, including the living room, kitchen, bedrooms, and study, but in the end, they made it all happen.

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As the couple told Southern Living, their new house on the outskirts allows them a lot of peaceful times, and serves as a weekend escape for the family, who felt that their primary home in the center of Laurel was becoming a little too small for their family of four.

All in all, despite all the health issues the Napiers have faced in the past years, these days they seem to be having lots of great times by just enjoying their TV success, and their businesses, always putting their family above everything else.

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Meet the Newest Swamp Baby: Pickle Wheat’s Daughter Is Here!

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Hunting ‘gators isn’t the easiest job around, yet there’s a group of people who live around the Atchafalaya River Basin who aren’t only more than willing to dedicate their lives to it but also enjoy doing so. As seen in the many seasons of “Swamp People”, catching ‘gators is a work which requires people to be fearless and a little too daring, but it’s worth it both for the money and keeping their familys’ traditions alive.

One of those fearless people is Pickle Wheat, who has demonstrated more than enough that she’s well fitted for the job, despite her young age. Nonetheless, besides being quite accomplished in catching ‘gators, Pickle is also a dedicated family mother, who recently welcomed her second baby.

So who is Pickle’s younger baby, and what’s with her current life? Stay here to know it all!

Did Pickle Wheat Become A Mother?

The “Swamp People” family recently welcomed a new member, who is none other than Pickle Wheat’s youngest baby. The girl was born in April 2023 and was named Maemi Rae, as her mother announced in a lovely Instagram pic at the time, in which the newborn girl could be seen sleeping while wrapped in a flowery blanket.

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Although the arrival of baby Maemi might be surprising for those who don’t follow Pickle’s social media, the truth is that the young ‘gator hunter had already announced her pregnancy back in November 2022, when she posted a Facebook pic of herself, her son, and her boyfriend buying baby clothes: ‘We are blessed beyond belief! This will be the best holiday season yet! I can’t wait to bring my little caboose on the alligator boat!’ she wrote, prompting her followers to ‘stay tuned’ for the following updates on her pregnancy journey.

Said and done, ever since she announced expecting a baby, Pickle grew rather active on social media and especially on Instagram, sharing photos and videos of her young family, and even revealing the name of her daughter a couple of months before giving birth.

All in all, there is nothing else for us than to congratulate Pickle on this chapter in her life.

What Else Is She Doing Now?

Even though it’s unclear if Pickle Wheat is taking time away from the swamps to take care of her newborn, the young ‘gator hunter was still an active “Swamp People” cast member by the time the show’s 14th season premiered in early 2023. Besides going on catching ‘gators, Pickle has some exciting adventures hunting snakes as well, even appearing alongside her mentor, Troy Landry in the third season of his show “Serpent Invasion”.

Although the life of a wild hunter is quite exciting on its own, this doesn’t stop Pickle from focusing on other projects. For a couple of years now, Pickle’s been selling her original designs through her online shop, picklewheat.com, listing everything from shirts to caps and hoodies in it.

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On the same line, Pickle’s popularity has been on the rise for some time now. Only a couple of months after starting her Instagram account in January 2023, Pickle has over 10,000 followers on the pic-sharing platform, added to the more than 100,000 fans she has on her official Facebook page, proving that she’s one of the most popular “Swamp People” stars.

Who Is Pickle Dating Now?

In October 2020, Pickle Wheat caught people’s attention for something very different than catching ‘gators, when she began dating her co-star Chase Landry. Back then the relationship became pretty obvious to anyone who was a fan of the pair, especially given how Pickle wasn’t shy from sharing pics with her boyfriend on her social media.

However, the relationship was short-lived, as a few months lafter Pickle deleted all her photos with Chase from her socials, and even her previous Instagram account at some point. It wasn’t until late 2022 when she shared news of her pregnancy on Facebook, that her followers were introduced to her new boyfriend, Joshua Kippes.

Not much is known about Joshua, except for the fact he’s an emergency technician and that he goes on a lot of adventures with Pickles. Though his professional background is vastly different than hers, Pickle has introduced him to her world by teaching him to hunt, and taking him on trips through her native Louisiana, as she’s proudly shown on social media.

Overall, Pickle seems to be very content about this new chapter in her life.

Did She Have An Accident?

Everyone who’s appeared in “Swamp People” is undoubtedly very experienced in what they do, but that doesn’t exclude them from having some rare accidents from time to time. It’s no different for Pickle Wheat, who a couple of years ago had a scary time while hunting ‘gators alongside Troy Landry.

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As Pickle recalled during an interview with The Sun, she was in the process of lifting a ‘gator from the water when the boat bumped over a cypress, resulting in Pickle falling overboard and onto the ‘gator. Although she was able to go back to the boat, the severity of the situation only dawned on her when she noticed Troy had been worried for her wellbeing.

At the end of the day, Pickle and Troy returned home safely, but the scary situation is one of those which reminds us of how dangerous the job of “Swamp People”s hunters is.

How Did Pickle Get Into ‘Gator Hunting?

Even though Pickle Wheat only became a main cast member of “Swamp People” in the 12th season, she had been catching ‘gators long before that.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CnJzh79uVaO/

As it happens, Pickle, whose real name is Cheyennes Wheat, is just continuing a long-lasting tradition of gator hunters from her family. As she admitted during an interview with The Sun in 2023, her grandfather was an experienced ‘gator hunter who passed down his knowledge to the younger generations. Impressively enough, at the tender age of six, Pickle was already accompanying her elders to the swamps, gaining the necessary experience to not only catch ‘gators by herself years later, but also to love the swampland as if it was her own home.

That being said, Pickles has no doubts that her children will grow to love her profession as much as she does: ‘There’s really no reason to be scared, we are around it our whole lives, so I hope to raise them in the same way that I was brought up’, she said, also admitting that it would be a ‘dream come true’ to see her children following on her steps.

All in all, Pickle Wheat is a great gator hunter, but there’s more to her than just the swamps. Regardless of whatever the future has in store for her on TV or off-cameras, there’s no doubt she’s someone worth keeping our attention on.

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