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Where are the “Big Fat Gypsy Weddings” cast today?



“Big Fat Gypsy Weddings” started unexpectedly; a single episode aired on 18 February 2010 as part of the well-known British documentary TV series “Cutting Edge,” which was on-screen from 1990 to 2017. However, after attracting critical acclaim and winning the Cultural Diversity Award for the Most Groundbreaking Show in 2010, the media network decided to commission five episodes of a dedicated show.

That was a success, too; its first episode, aired on 29 January 2011 on Channel 4, had about seven million viewers, and the third was the most-watched, with nearly nine million. However, many people, us included, wondered what happened to the couples after the show went off air in 2015, so we investigated who remains married, has children, or is divorced.

Weddings start early and don’t always last

The show, while it focuses on the rush of preparing for marriage and the splendor of the wedding day with hundreds of Travellers or Gypsies present, shows many controversial traditions. Despite dreaming of the wedding day from a young age, the participants frequently marry, with their family’s blessing, between ages 16 and 18. Additionally, community members are usually only allowed to marry a fellow Traveller or Gypsy, and mustn’t indulge in sex before marriage, talk back to their elders, or divorce. Therefore, some fear rejecting their partner and feel stuck if they realize marrying that person was a mistake.

The parents were also criticized for sexualizing children, putting them in full make-up and dressing them up as if attending a beauty pageant. The concept of grabbing in the show, where a groom pins down and tries to kiss a girl who catches his eye, is also frowned upon; however, many Travellers claim that the show fabricated it. All these factors affect the success rate and the longevity of the marriages shown in “Big Fat Gypsy Wedding,” leaving fans to wonder who said ‘I do’ to their true love.

Paddy Doherty

Paddy Doherty, a bare-knuckle boxer and perhaps the best-known cast member of “Big Fat Gypsy Weddings” because he won “Celebrity Big Brother” in the year the first season aired, has been through a lot. He’s been married to Roseanne for decades, and they’re still together as of 2023. Paddy has 10 children, but most people only know about his three sons. His presumably oldest son, Patrick, died in July 1996, and Paddy said in September 2011, during his “The Late Late Show” appearance, that he drank his son’s blood immediately after he passed away, explaining to the host Ryan Tubridy that it made him feel closer to him.

His second, David, was sentenced to a three-year jail sentence in 2012, for causing death by careless driving, after his friend, James Loveridge, a passenger in his Mitsubishi Shogun SUV was killed. He was then jailed for seven years in November 2018, for burglarizing a home with a gang of criminals.


His third son, Simey, became known through the news on 22 August 2020, when a 22-year-old criminal attacked him and tried to rip a US$37,500 Rolex watch and diamond ring off him. In the process, the mugger kicked Simey in the head and threw him the ground, leaving him with three brain bleeds and a bloody, muddy face.

Paddy also has several grandchildren he posts about. However, his granddaughter Margaret attracted the most attention by telling the “This Morning” hosts that she wants to leave school at eight, despite Paddy’s efforts to dissuade her.

Paddy faced another family tragedy in April 2017 when his father, Simon Doherty, died. Only a year later, his cart racer nephew, Michael “Mikey” Connors, died in July aged 32, when a BMW hit him from behind while riding Paddy’s champion horse. Almost simultaneously, Paddy was diagnosed with prostate cancer, but only revealed it seven months later in April 2019, when doctors had given him the all-clear. However, the illness left a mark on his mental state, and he stated that he suffered from depression afterward.

Then, in 2020 and 2021, Paddy announced on Facebook that he ended up in the hospital three times because he had severe symptoms of COVID-19. Even worse, his sister died from COVID-19 in January 2021, and he couldn’t attend the funeral because he was ill.

John McFadyen and Cheyenne Pidgley

Cheyenne appeared in the show at 14 and immediately sparked controversy. While grabbing is allegedly a Gypsy tradition, John pinning her against a wall and forcing her to kiss him was something many viewers disliked. Regardless, it worked for them; Cheyenne became engaged to him, but the wedding didn’t happen immediately because her mother had died of cancer. After some time, the couple married in a beautiful wedding ceremony with 200 guests.

However, while the marriage seemed to blossom in private, the couple resurfaced in 2018, but not for a good reason. CCTV footage showed McFadyen and his brother Isaac attempting to rob the neighbor of singer and actress Amanda Holden. John, in particular, threatened to ‘hurt her toddler and take him away’ if she didn’t comply and hand her expensive rings over.

Thankfully, nearby scaffolders heard the commotion and chased the brothers away, saving the mother and her child – Amanda called them ‘scumbags’ after posting the video on social media, and John received two years and eight months in jail while his brother got the same sentence, but in a youth offenders institution. In total, their 12-man gang received 68 years behind bars.

John left the jail ahead of schedule, and started a business, Garden Shed Pubs and Nightclubs UK, in 2019, showcasing his luxury pub shed, which sold alcoholic drinks and had a pool table, a games room including a dart board, and a fireplace. It also featured murals of individuals such as Al Pacino, Conor McGregor, Tyson Fury and Bob Marley. After leaving the jail, John had also became passionate about bodybuilding .

Although little is known about their private life, since Cheyenne made her Instagram profile – @cheyenne_johnx – private, we know that the couple is still together and has two daughters, Julie-Ann and Berry-Marie – some insiders said that they were awaiting a son in April 2018. Cheyenne also stated that if their daughters decide to leave school at 13, as she did, she will approve of it as long as they learn to read and write. Similarly, she would support their decision to marry at 16.

Bill and Joe Smith

Joe and Bill Smith’s tragic ending was a shock to people who tune in to see glorious weddings. The police found the 32-year-old twin brothers, who appeared in season three as landscapers, hanging from a tree in Sevenoaks, Kent County, after 11 AM in December 2019 – they quickly concluded that this was a case of double suicide. According to family sources, Joe was diagnosed with cancer, and Bill, whom the family called “Billy,” told him that he wouldn’t be able to live without him. Although Joe apparently told his family that he was in remission after undergoing chemotherapy, they suspect that he didn’t want to worry them.

A cousin found the suicide note, and the community members stated that they had a suicide pact and would be found ‘in the woods where they played with the family years ago.’ The community also revealed that they may have had depression. Billy was dating and presumably wanted to marry Kristine Davey, from Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, who posted a heartbreaking update on social media, but didn’t elaborate on the events before his death; Joe left behind a nine-year-old son. Their family organized a beautiful funeral procession, with white horse carriages transporting identical coffins, with flowers arranged to look like a tequila bottle and a Rolex watch.

Chantelle Kielly and Jim

Chantelle Kielly was heavily criticized for what can be considered incest, after marrying her first cousin, Jim, when she was 18. She made a spectacle, with the whole of her hometown of Rathkeale attending, including 73 best men and seven bridesmaids. Her dress, designed by Thelma, had over 20,000 crystals, and her family allegedly paid a $50,000 to $125,000 dowry to Jim’s family for their engagement. While they seem absent from social media, the lack of updates from the family or insiders, especially after such a high-profile wedding, suggests that the cousins are still happily married.


Danielle Maughan and Brendan Joyce

Brendan and Danielle attracted much attention for marrying a day after her 16th birthday, the youngest legal age to marry in the UK. Brendan was 21, and the public suggested that she was too young to consent; moreover, they thought she was pressured into it; the celebration cost over £50,000 or US$62,500, and she wore a 6ft or 1.8m wide dress, neither of which she could pay for herself at that age. Luckily, the couple defied all odds and proved their doubters wrong; they are still married and have two children as of 2023.

Sam Norton and Pat Lee

Sam Norton, a 17-year-old “gorger”, a person outside of the Traveller community, was trying to adjust to the Gypsy lifestyle when she married Pat Lee in 2011. Most viewers remember her extensive dress that had lights and moving butterflies, and her pregnant belly during the BAFTA TV Awards red carpet event that year. Unfortunately, things didn’t work out between them, and they divorced for unknown reasons. Sam remarried, but took someone outside the Traveller community this time, while Pat doesn’t have a social media presence. However, they continue to co-parent their son.

Patrick Ward and Joan Furey

Most people remember Joan for wearing a luxurious dress with a 20ft or 6m train, and arriving at church in her Cinderella-inspired carriage. However, despite saying that she would never divorce Patrick, a part-time laborer, she did so in 2011, the year her season premiered. She revealed to Sunday Express, ‘I’ll always regret marrying him… I’ve torn up my wedding photos and sold my dress.’ An insider disclosed that she never destroyed her dress, but said that she did out of anger.

Regardless, the court granted her a divorce for Patrick’s unreasonable behavior, including control and jealousy. Joan was eight months pregnant when the divorce was finalized, and admitted in 2012 that they lost contact after the split, suggesting that Patrick doesn’t even know their son’s name, Roman. She also mentioned hearing that he’d married a younger Irish Traveller bride after they went their separate ways.

Josie McFadyen and Swanley Smith

Josephine “Josie” McFadyen, sister to Isaac and John and six confirmed siblings, and her then-boyfriend, Swanley Smith, were among the most memorable couples. While their family dynamic was interesting, since they married after only five months of dating, what remains in most viewers’ memories was their splendid pink wedding with a Spanish theme. The couple also started a family early; she gave birth to a daughter, also named Josie, at 16, when Swanley was 19, making her the first of her siblings to do so.

However, things quickly turned sour, and she became the show’s first divorcee around May 2012. She stated that life with Swanley no longer made her happy, and she wanted to focus on being a good mother. Besides her brief run-in with the law, when she caused a commotion at another gypsy wedding, and received an electronic police tag for three months, her life was mostly quiet.


That changed in 2019 during Swanley’s birthday, when she was caught physically and verbally attacking two sisters, Margaret and Eileen Doyle; her mother, Josie Doherty, siblings Barbara and Isaac, and cousin Charlie Collins were also the perpetrators. Although all five denied the attack, bystanders reported that one stomped Margaret’s head and stomach and shouted, ‘Go on, kick the baby out of her!’ Moreover, it was revealed that Margaret was eight months pregnant and partially blind and that the two groups had a family feud.

Barbara, who made brief appearances in her sister’s episodes, was caught on 13 April 2019 trying to smuggle a small mobile phone to her ex-boyfriend, Shane Warburton, by hiding it in her children’s diaper and received a six-month sentence. However, it was unclear if Shane was one of the attackers,.

Josephine has an Instagram account today – @josie_mcfadyen28 – on which she announced on 27 January 2022 that she’d found a new boyfriend. However, insiders have revealed that she’s been dating Richard since early 2020, and that they were expecting a boy in June 2020. Josie also showed a pregnant stomach in June 2022, indirectly revealing that they are expecting their second child. One person, allegedly close to the family, commented in a Facebook fan group that it was her fourth. Josie also posted about a previous relationship with an unnamed English Traveller in early 2018. Finally, one fan mentioned that Josie’s mother gave birth to her 10th child after the show stopped filming.

Ina and Michael

Ina and Michael didn’t have such a prominent marriage, but many fans remember her secret relationship and piercing sky-blue eyes. She was 15 when she met Ian who was 17, and the family forced them to go through a typical courtship after her uncle told on her to her mom. However, she was convinced that she ‘only had to kiss one frog to find her forever prince.’

While she was undoubtedly happy, and things looked good when she said Ian was “the one” for her, there was some doubt because of her age. However, Ina is still married to Michael and has two children, a boy and a girl, as of May 2023.

Noreen and Tony

Viewers may recall Noreen as the Irish Traveller who focused on her independence instead of finding a husband. Although she helped design most cakes for other women’s weddings, Noreen transitioned from working in a cake shop to owning a hair salon, Noreen’s Lavish Locks, after the show.

While there were no indications that she plans to marry as of 2016, updates from two years later showed that she began dating someone. Then, social media posts revealed that she married Tony in April 2018, and a year and a half later on 1 January, news surfaced that the couple had recently welcomed a daughter named Josie. Additionally, before and after pregnancy, Noreen displayed a taste for elegant fashion, and possibly designed some dresses.


Thelma Madine and Leanne Alexandra

Thelma Madine was at the forefront during the show’s run as the primary wedding dressmaker. Her creativity was so beloved that she earned a spin-off TV show, “Thelma’s Gypsy Girls,” allowing her to showcase her fabulous, over-the-top dress designs.

However, a prolonged court case with Leanne Phillips, her former head designer, mainly occupied her post-show life. Although Thelma called her ‘a major creative force’ at her Liverpool Traveller design shop, Nico, she let her go in 2012.

Leanne promptly set up a design shop under her own name, Leanne Alexandra, in the same city, taking away some of Thelma’s customers and eventually stealing her designs. Thelma won one court case for a design theft and accused Leanne of stealing and using her designs for a Crystal Princess Figurine range of porcelain girl figurines. In an interview with ECHO, she said that the two-and-a-half-year court battle harmed her mental health more than her prison sentence for benefits fraud in 2001. That was largely because Leanne was allegedly bankrupt, making it hard for Thelma to collect money from her wages.

After her legal battle concluded, she used the lower level of her fashion shop to open a cafe, Cafe Nico, in late 2019. Thelma has a daughter named Margaret, a teenager in 2020 who was occasionally active on social media. According to some fans, Leanne has a daughter and was expecting a second child in June 2020.

There are no guarantees

Learning about the history and post-show events of the couples in “Big Fat Gypsy Weddings” made it clear that neither fans nor the cast members and their families could foresee the success of the marriages. Some, like Danielle and Brendan, married early, developed their romantic bond, and are now parents; Ina and Michael had a similar story. In contrast, Josie and Joan seemed enamored with Swanley and Patrick, respectively, and viewers predicted a bright future after they became pregnant. Yet, both women left their marriage within a year and found new partners, in the case of Josie, or are presumably single, like Joan.

Most couples aren’t sharing their post-marriage life

Although weddings seem to be at the forefront, some episodes showed dishonesty, such as when they booked a venue but didn’t tell the owners that a Gypsy wedding would occur until the last minute. Others display illegal activities, for example, when one Gypsy family started building infrastructure on land where laws forbid doing so. Many families also regret their appearance, usually because their lifestyle was stereotyped or they decided not to let viewers judge their traditions.

All these reasons make learning what happened to the couples difficult, and fans must rely on periodic updates from sources close to the family.

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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The Rise and Fall of “American Hot Rod”: What Went Wrong?



Boyd Coddington, the creative visionary who elevated hot rodding into an art form, was hailed by many as the “King of Hot Rods”, being largely credited for creating the hot rod craze on the West Coast, with many of his creations reaching legendary status. The Vern Luce Coupe put him on the map, and the CadZZilla was acclaimed as one of the most authentic and original car customizations in the world. He headlined “American Hot Rod” aired on Warner Bros. Discovery-owned TLC and Discovery Channel from 2004 to 2007, ending with his death in 2008.

A brief history of American hot rodding

A hot rod is usually referred to as an American car modified or rebuilt to improve its look and make it unique, as well as to optimize its speed and acceleration; its predecessors were said to be the modified cars used by bootleggers during the Prohibition era to evade the authorities. Hot rods made their first appearance sometime in the 1930s in Southern California, as car enthusiasts raced them on the Mojave Desert’s dry lake beds. Car clubs were formed, and the Southern California Timing Association was established in 1937 to bring them together and organize racing events.

America officially entered World War II in 1941, which put a halt to everything, as those young hot rodders joined the military, and gasoline was rationed. When the war ended, new cars were in short supply; however, the veterans put their mechanical and technical training to good use to modify old cars, and hot rodding became popular again. The Hot Rod Magazine was first published In 1948,, feeding the interest of gearheads and promoting hot rodding on a nationwide scale.

People street raced, which resulted in dangerous situations, sometimes with fatalities. This prompted the creation of the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) as a governing body for hot rodding, to create standards and rules for competitions. In 1963, the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) was formed to bring together original equipment manufacturers, aftermarket manufacturers, distributors, and media.


Hot rodding as a hobby had waned in the 1960s, and muscle cars designed for high-performance driving and drag racing became the new trend; they were affordable and could outperform old hot rods. However, the 1973 Oil Crisis resulted in a shift of focus by car manufacturers, from performance to fuel efficiency, which caused the resurgence of hot rodding. The Chevy small-block engine became the most popular choice for hot rodders during that period.

In the 1970s, Boyd Coddington began to make a name for himself in building unique hot rods; his work was celebrated by the automotive industry and car enthusiasts from all over.

The Life of Boyd Coddington

Idaho native Boyd Leon Coddington was born on 28 August 1944, to Harold and Lorna Sparrow Coddington – his father was a dairy farmer who later became the owner of a landscaping company when the family moved to Salt Lake City. Even as a young child, Boyd was into cars and hot rods, devouring magazines about them whenever he could. He had an early start designing, constructing, and welding car parts, and got his first truck, a 1931 Chevrolet pickup, when he was still three years shy of legally driving it – it was said that he traded a shotgun to acquire it. Boyd studied to become a machinist at a technical trade school, and was an apprentice for three years at a machine shop.

To pursue his dreams, he moved to Southern California in 1968. He worked the graveyard shift at Disneyland in Anaheim as a machinist, and constructed hot rods during his free time in his home garage. As his skills in improving the look of a car became well-known, it also became his main source of income. He opened his auto shop in 1977 called Hot Rods by Boyd, and his unique style and cutting-edge skills drew people to his shop.

He and Diane Elkins, an industrial nurse, met on a blind date in January 1971, and three months later, they were married. They had two kids together, Christopher and Gregory. Boyd had a son from his first wife, Peggy King, whom he married in 1965 and divorced a few years later – he and Diane divorced in 1996.

He along with his second wife, Diane, and his kids relocated in 1978 to Orange Avenue at Buena Park where he put a 1,000-square-foot garage at the back of the house as his shop. Two months after they moved, he quit his job at Disneyland to focus on hot rod building.

The Billet Movement – Revolutionized the industry

Billet wheels are entirely designed and manufactured using a Computer Numerical Control (CNC) process, meaningt that a machine carved out the whole design and shape. There are plenty of configuration options available for customization, such as different lug nut and back spacing configurations, as well as one-off design patterns.

Master hot rodder John “Lil’ John” Buttera was Boyd’s friend and mentor; they worked together to make custom-fabricated alloy wheels known as billet. When they couldn’t find or buy a part they wanted for their creations, they made one from aluminum. Boyd credited Lil’ John for inventing the billet wheel, machining the first set of wheels and billet parts, but the former took it to another level. He manufactured and marketed billet wheels when he established Boyd Wheels Inc.

The two collaborated often, as Lil’ John did chassis design and machine work on some of Boyd’s early cars. Later on, they were engaged in a one-upmanship game – when Lil’ John built the 1927 Model T Ford sedan, Boyd followed suit and constructed a 1926 T. Lil’ John’s 1929 Ford Model A roadster inspired Boyd to make the “Silver Bullet,” described by Street Rodder Magazine as a ‘striking blend of traditional styling, contemporary rodding and innovation.’

The Vern Luce Coupe – Defined an era of hot rodding

Boyd’s then-wife, Diane, described Vern Luce as a very quiet and unassuming guy, who loved cars and often hung around the shop. One of his sons, Chris, remembered him as the “candy man,” who brought treats whenever he visited, as he owned a candy company. No one would have guessed that the transformation of his 1933 Ford Coupe by Boyd’s crew would create a huge impact that was said to have changed the landscape of hot rodding, with its sleek styling and smooth look.

It set the stage for what would be known as the ‘Boyd Look” in which everything was shaved with no door handles and hinges. The Vern Luce Coupe bagged the Al Slonaker Award in 1981 at the Oakland Roadster Show for its technical excellence. Thom Taylor, a graduating student from Pasadena’s Art Center College of Design at that time, made the design, but it took a team of talented individuals to actually make it happen.


CadZZilla – A one-of-a-kind car

One of the most iconic auto customizations ever constructed by Boyd was the CadZZilla, commissioned by ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons in 1989. It was designed by one of Cadillac’s head designers, Larry Erickson, and built by metal artisan, Craig Naff. The 1948 Cadillac Sedanette was initially going to be a ‘simple’ customization project but it didn’t quite fit the unique style of the rock band’s guitarist and main vocalist, so further changes were made to the design to make it more revolutionary; Craig then set to work on it. The car featured ‘a chopped roofline, fully welded front clip with a sectioned hood and front fender combination that tilts open in one fell swoop,’ along with ‘Frenched headlights and custom tapering along the sides of the car that flows effortlessly into the lowered and fully blended rear quarters.’

Filed for bankruptcy

Boyd’s businesses had grown so big and successful that they went public in 1995 in an Initial Public Offering on the NASDAQ. However, Boyd filed for personal bankruptcy in 2001, as he lacked the means to pay off debts amounting to $529,000, having listed only $8,800 in assets. The debts were incurred by Hot Rods by Boyd and Boyds Wheels, which went bankrupt three years prior. Although Boyd Wheels reportedly had nearly $30 million in annual sales, it ran out of cash, and its credit line was frozen. Apparently, it ramped up production just when the market dwindled for high-end custom wheels, and its assets were liquidated. Creditors filed a lawsuit against Boyd as they claimed that he used company assets for personal gain, which he denied.

The lawyer for the unsecured creditors was surprised by Boyd’s move, and was suspicious of Boyd Coddington Wheels and Boyd Coddington Garage, the two companies that his son, Boyd Coddington Jr., established. His son said that his father’s financial and legal troubles would not affect these new businesses in any way, shape, or form, as it appeared that Boyd had no stake in them, and only drew a nominal salary.

However, there was some legal dispute over the use of his name in the new ventures. The Automotive Performance Group, which gained control of his previous businesses, sued them for trademark infringement, which was later settled when Body agreed to use his full name instead.

Starting over

Many were surprised when Boyd was seen attending the Street Ride Nationals in Louisville, Kentucky, after his businesses collapsed and his reputation was ruined. Unlike in the past when he had his whole entourage with him, and his trademark hot rods were put on display, this time around, he only brought a small card table on which aluminum car wheels were all laid out. Someone approached him and asked how he could go on, and if he was embarrassed by what happened. Boyd simply told him, ‘A man’s got to do what a man’s got to do.’ and said that he had no intention of quitting.

According to reports, he sold some of his real estate holdings for $1.5 million and his Ferrari for $150,000 to have funds for his new ventures, saying that he wanted to prove that he could still do it. Naturally he encountered obstacles, as some were skeptical about how the new company would fare. While mentioning his name was met with derision, especially from some automotive insiders, it seemed that there were people who still believed in him, or at least his designs. The sales from Boyd Coddington Wheels business had picked up, as it benefited from the resurgence of demand for custom wheels. As for Boyd Coddington Garage, it was fully operational too, and had sold vehicles worth $100,000 to $450,000. By all appearances, it seemed that he was right when he claimed that he was back in the game.

Lil’ John once said that one of the reasons for Boyd’s downfall was that he believed in his own press, that anything with his name on it would sell. However, Boyd claimed that he’d learned from his past mistakes. He said, ‘I learned about the American dream and then about the American nightmare. I’m trying to build the American dream again.’


Chip Foose and Jesse James began their careers at Boyd’s shop

His auto shop might have had a high turnover rate, but no one could dispute the fact that the hot rods that he built were exceptional. It was said that this was largely due to his team. Boyd had a keen eye for talent, and he made sure that he employed the best in their field. Most notable personalities that worked at his shop included Jesse James of “Monster Garage” and Chip Foose of “Overhaulin’”, long before they gained fame from their own automotive-related reality TV shows.

From what fans could glean from an interview with Chip, in the past it seemed that there was friction between the two guys and that it had something to do with whether Chip was given proper credit for his designs that came out of Boyd’s shop in the 1990s. It was also reported that there were properties that Chip believed to be his that were affected when one of Boyd’s companies went bankrupt. When Boyd died, Chip released a statement that read, ‘I appreciate all of the opportunities Boyd offered me while I worked with him and I owe a large part of my career and success to the great working relationship we had.’ He said that Boyd, who was like a second father to him, allowed all his employees the freedom to create, design and fabricate the best in custom vehicles.

Jesse who had his start at Boyd’s shop had said, ‘He just had the eye for cleanliness and design. The cars that came out of that original hot rod shop were amazing examples of graceful craftsmanship.’

“American Hot Rod”

Boyd’s creativity and personality seemed perfect for a reality television show. The bearded and bespectacled hot rodder was easily recognizable as he regularly donned Hawaiian shirts. He came across as loud, sharp-tongued, and cantankerous, so there was a lot of tension and drama at the shop, especially when deadlines were fast approaching. However, those who knew him and had been in his shop for years said that they had never seen Boyd work like that.

“American Hot Rod” premiered in 2004, and it followed Boyd and his crew as they constructed hot rods and custom cars at his shop in La Habra, California. The creation of one custom car was chronicled in three to four episodes, with each episode lasting an hour.

It ran for five seasons, and some of the work his team had done included the hand-made roadster nicknamed the Alumatub, the classic 1942 Woodie, the 1961 Chevy Impala Bubbletop, and an Elvis tribute car.


Convicted for fraud

In 2005, the State of California accused Boyd of fraud for allegedly passing off his custom-fabricated cars as ‘antique cars’ or older than they actually were in the titles submitted to the Department of Motor Vehicles; this was reportedly done to avoid tax obligations and emissions control regulations. Boyd pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge before the Sacramento County Superior Court, and was ordered to perform 160 hours of community service and pay a $3,000 fine.

His death at age 63

It was announced on 27 February 2008, that Boyd died at the Presbyterian Intercommunity Hospital in Whittier due to complications following surgery for a perforated colon, and kidney complications along with sepsis. He was a long-time diabetic, and had been admitted to hospital on 31 December 2007. Shortly after New Year’s Eve, he was released only to undergo surgery a few days later. He was survived by his third wife, Jo McGee, whom he married in 2002, and five children from three marriages.

His legacy

Boyd Coddington changed the world of hot rodding. What set him apart from other hot rodders was that he designed and manufactured almost every part of the vehicle he constructed – his work set the standards for custom car design. He bagged the highly coveted America’s Most Beautiful Roadster Award six times, which was unprecedented, won the Daimler-Chrysler Design Excellence Award twice, and in 1988, he was Hot Rod magazine’s “Man of the Year,” and the 1933 Ford Coupe that he built landed on the cover of the Smithsonian Magazine.

Boyd was inducted into the National Rod & Custom Museum Hall of Fame, Grand National Roadster Show Hall of Fame, Route 66 Hall of Fame, and SEMA Hall of Fame.

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The Saddest Stories Ever Featured in Paternity Court



About “Paternity Court”

“Lauren Lake’s Paternity Court”, which ran from 2013 to 2020, was a non-traditional court show starring Lauren Lake, a respected family lawyer and legal analyst. The series was a 79th & York Entertainment and Orion Television production, and received a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Legal/Courtroom Program in 20019. Unfortunately, MGM was forced to discard all courtroom programs due to financial struggles in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and changes in ownership of the network.

With court programming being the second highest-rated genre on daytime television as of 2012, the inception of “Paternity Court” was also helped by the success of “Maury”. Nevertheless, there was a marked difference between the two shows, as “Maury” was more focused on drama and shenanigans, whereas “Paternity Court” worked towards using the test results as a way for the participants in the show to build healthy and long-lasting relationships. Ultimately, the goal of the program was to reinvigorate the court show genre by reaching the widest possible audience.

The format of each episode sees Lauren Lake speak to the show’s litigants and decide cases based on the results of DNA tests. Probate disputes over wills were also an integral part of the show; in early 2013, the show’s creator, David Armour, shared more of what happened on set – “We don’t take any of this lightly. There is a responsible side to the show where we help families get on the right path,” he shared. “We want to dig into these stories much deeper than any other court show does. We’re dealing with resolutions about how families can move forward now that they have results.”


Before and after the results, Lauren would take time to speak with her litigants. Most episodes of “Paternity Court” only focused on one case, unlike other present-day court shows which focus on two. However, it’s unclear just how involved MGM or the production team were with each family when filming wrapped up.

The doomed court series spawned two sister shows: “Personal Injury Court”, which was hosted by Gino Brogdon, and “Couples Court with the Cutlers”, which was hosted by Keith and Dana Cutler and used testing and evidence to prove – or disprove – infidelity. Sadly, all three shows were cancelled after ending production due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Saddest Moments

“Paternity Court” regaled its viewers with truly heart-breaking moments over the years, such as the episode in which Donna Andrews asked for a paternity test to prove that the man who had raised her was her biological father. Donna, who had gone out to dine with some friends in Atlanta one fateful evening, was shocked when a man approached her out of the blue and showed her a tattoo of her name on his leg. Obviously, this caused her to doubt everything about her childhood and the man she believed to be her biological father.

William Glenn, who claimed to be Donna’s biological father, said that he’d kept it a secret for thirty years because Donna had been raised in a loving household and he didn’t want to turn her life upside-down. Roger Andrews, the man who raised Donna, was deceased, as well as Donna’s biological mother. The plot thickens, as it turns out that Donna was aware of William’s existence due to him being the father of one of her younger sisters.

Although Roger and Donna didn’t actually live together, perhaps due to him being separated from Donna’s mother, he did everything a supportive father does, and was even present during Donna’s high school graduation ceremony. When Roger passed away on the due date of Donna’s second child, she was understandably traumatized; when she was approached by William at the restaurant that fateful night, she was still mourning Roger’s death, but made it clear that she wasn’t looking for a replacement by taking the case to “Paternity Court”.


Telling his side of the story, William shared that he and Donna’s mother began dating in 1976 and that Donna was born when William “left” for eight months. When William asked Donna’s mother about her pregnancy, she didn’t give him any clear answers or indicate that he could be the biological father.

Before the restaurant incident, other odd things happened to Donna that made her doubt Roger being her real father. While on a plane, she was somehow seated next to someone who claimed to know who her biological father was. When this person gave Donna a description, she was confused because it didn’t match Roger at all. Then, a few months after Roger died, one of Donna’s cousins confessed that she wasn’t really his daughter.

“You waited until my mother passed away. We don’t have nobody’s word but your word now,” Donna reproached William. When the DNA results revealed that William was indeed Donna’s biological father, she was blown away, and broke down in tears. Donna, who had brought a framed picture of Roger with her to the courtroom, also showed William the photo and doubled down on her stance: she considered Roger her father, not him.

The next case we’ll be discussing is equally depressing. Siblings Hector Hunt and Precious Raysor decided to sue their parents for a paternity test after a huge argument in which it was revealed that the man that they believed to be their father, Richard Jacobs, wasn’t after all. Despite being the only father figure in the siblings’ life, Richard allegedly revealed that the siblings weren’t his biological children while arguing with his wife. However, Richard claimed that he only said that in the heat of the moment, due to a hurtful comment his wife, Daisy Hammonds, had made.

“This is the only man I’ve known for all my life,” an emotional Precious berated her mother. “He’s been there for my kindergarten graduation, my sixth-grade graduation, how many men do you know sit in the delivery room with their daughter while they’re having a baby?” When Precious’s mother confessed that she didn’t really know who their father was, Precious exploded, as she had planned on Richard walking her down the aisle at her wedding, which would take place a few months after the episode.


As it happens, for years there had been rumors in the neighborhood of a man named Tommy Farmer being Precious and Hector’s biological father. When Tommy was shown on the screen for a videocall, Precious was so incredulous that she walked out of the courtroom. Daisy confessed to having had a sexual relationship with Tommy around the time of her pregnancy with Precious, and refused to look her children in the eye, which made her appear guilty.

When it was revealed that Richard wasn’t Precious or Hector’s biological father, he and the siblings broke down in court. Tearful hugs were shared between the three and Daisy also appeared visibly devastated. The episode ended on an even worse note, when Daisy shared that she wasn’t Hector’s biological mother, but rather a woman that had died shortly after childbirth was.

For the first 33 years of her life, Jazmine St. James was a daddy’s girl and was even walked down the aisle by the man she believed to be her father, Kenneth Esaw. However, six months before appearing in the show, Kenneth revealed during an argument that she wasn’t his biological daughter. Stunned, Jazmine and her brother opened a paternity case to get the answers they needed.

Kenneth always believed that he wasn’t Jazmine’s biological father but never found the right moment to tell her the truth. Apparently, he agreed to take a paternity test so that the truth could set him free, as the secret had been haunting him for over three decades. The argument between Jazmine and Kenneth started when Jazmine confronted her father as to why he wasn’t more present in his grandchildren’s lives.

After discovering the truth, Jazmine began suffering from depression and anxiety. “I feel like I’m going to die of heartbreak,” she confessed tearfully, sharing that she hadn’t been eating or sleeping since Kenneth dropped the bombshell.


Kenneth then shared that, shortly after getting into a relationship with Jazmine’s mother, they learned she was pregnant. However, when they went to the doctor, they realized that he couldn’t be the father because she was too far along. Kenneth’s mother was also present in the courtroom and corroborated his version of events.

When the DNA results proved that Kenneth wasn’t Jazmine’s biological father, he looked somewhat relieved, whereas she looked completely heartbroken. Even so, she thanked Kenneth for raising her as his daughter.

We can all agree that, although “Paternity Court” was never picked up by another network following its cancellation, Lauren Lake and the production team did a great job at sharing these people’s stories, and helping some families find the closure they needed to move on in their lives.

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Michael Ilesanmi’s Toxic Relationship With Angela Deem



Michael Ilesanmi

Viewers of the “90 Day Fiancé” franchise are more than familiar with Michael Ilesanmi, who has been in a turbulent relationship with wife Angela Deem since 2018. Michael became a fan favorite in the second season of “90 Day Fiancé: Before the 90 Days” due to Angela being such a controversial character in the show; the blonde, who is in her late 50s, doesn’t let Michael work or have social media accounts and has made it clear on many occasions that she doesn’t trust him.

With that said, Michael hasn’t done much to build that trust either. Things were going well at the beginning of the relationship, when the couple connected on social media in 2018 – so well, in fact, that Angela soon flew out to Michael’s home country of Nigeria to visit him. The glaring age gap and cultural differences between the two soon became evident. At the time, Angela was 52 years old and already had grandchildren, whereas Michael was two decades younger.

Angela’s daughter and friends began voicing their concerns, and when the interracial couple began having disagreements in Nigeria, she wondered if her younger boyfriend was secretly embarrassed to be seen with her. At the beginning of the relationship, Michael also admitted that he had cheated on Angela by engaging in sexual acts with a local woman. Since then, the tenuous trust between the couple was broken.


Angela’s first trip to Nigeria ended with Michael handing her an engagement ring wrapped in an American flag. Almost as soon as she returned to the US, the TV personality accused her Nigerian lover of draining her bank account, and proceeded to scream at him over the phone, which many viewers considered verbal abuse. Angela had given Michael her debit card for him to make a $300 withdrawal, but somehow he took out three times as much – allegedly by mistake.

In the third season of “Before the 90 Days”, the duo was reunited and waiting for him to obtain his K-1 visa. After yet another onscreen argument, Michael tried to apologize to Angela for cheating on her by giving her a cake… Which Angela promptly threw at his face. The relationship became even more chaotic when the couple discovered that there were little to no chances of Angela getting pregnant; when she asked her daughter, Skyla, to act as a surrogate, Skyla was outraged and refused.

Unfortunately for Michael, his visa was denied, which Angela discovered when she returned to the US during the seventh season of “90 Day Fiancé”. Even so, the couple tried to put aside their cultural differences and work on their trust issues, before celebrating their grandiose Nigerian wedding in season five of “90 Day Fiancé: Happily Ever After?”.

Days after the nuptials, which took place at the beginning of 2020, Angela had to unexpectedly return home due to the death of her ailing mother. The newlyweds were put to the test yet again when coronavirus-related travel restrictions were implemented before Angela could fly back to Nigeria, with both parties struggling to keep the flame alive.


While Angela waited for Michael’s spousal visa to come through, she put her baby search on the backburner and began dieting and exercising instead. However, her husband was vehemently against the idea of Angela slimming down or having a breast reduction. When Angela flirted with the doctor responsible for her weight loss surgery, Michael – who, by now, had become a minor celebrity thanks to his affable personality and hilarious on-screen moments – felt hurt and insecure. All this helped Angela become the villain of the relationship, despite Michael having cheated on her.

While healing from her surgeries, Angela tried to remotely track Michael’s activity and location via his phone, after he’d stopped communicating with her. This led to another explosive row that left the couple on the verge of a split; nevertheless, they gave things another go at the request of Tracey, Angela’s psychic.

In an attempt to win Michael back, Angela went under the knife for new breast implants, as her chest was his favorite feature of hers. During the season six Tell-All episode of “Happily Ever After?”, Angela began arguing with Michael’s aunt, Lydia, when the latter judged her for undergoing weight loss surgery instead of trying for a baby. Angela was so incandescent with rage that she flashed her breasts at the cameras; she also argued with Michael for taking his aunt’s side during the heated verbal argument.

The on-screen spat spiraled out of control and ended with Angela announcing that she would be acting single and flaunting her new, slimmer body until Michael could come to the US. During her “90 Day Fiancé” spin-off, the American met up with a former love interest, and was also seen destroying Michael’s car during a visit to Nigeria, which caused him to break up from her.


As things between Angela and Michael are so volatile, we just don’t know if the couple have broken up for good, or are planning to get back together. However, we can tell you more about Angela’s former flame, a handsome Canadian named Billy Sotiropoulos who also happens to be one of her close friends. Angela flew over to Canada to support Billy at his fundraising event, and was warmly welcomed when she touched down in Toronto.

Not everyone was pleased with Angela visiting Billy, with many followers of the couple reminding her that she would go crazy if Michael did the same. Anyone who keeps up with Angela and Michael’s exhausting marriage knows that the blonde has forbidden him from having female friends; meanwhile, she has no intentions of toning down her controversial online content, such as her provocative dancing videos.

In any case, it appears that Michael is now in the States after finally getting his green card. There have been rumors of Michael planning to leave Angela to be with his anonymous 30-year-old American girlfriend, with whom he allegedly cheated on his wife. These rumors have led to people thinking that Michael was only playing a waiting game with Angela, until he could obtain American citizenship. Nevertheless, only time will tell if the warring couple make things work or go their separate ways for good.

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