Monday, January 15, 2007

Hello, Mrs. McKenzie

As a perhaps mistimed part of the run-up to the Billy McKenzie anniversary memorial gig, The Sunday Mail has run an interview with Billy's short-lived wife.

Like that episode of The Simpsons, it turns out McKenzie had a Vegas wife, Chloe:

"At 17, Billy was a real sweetheart. He was gorgeous.

"We began dating and got married shortly after that. Billy proposed in Las Vegas. I had no idea he was going to ask me to marry him.

"So we just got married right there and then."

Chloe is dismissive of suggestions he saw her as some sort of visa-requirement workaround, pointing out they were married for four years. They eventually divorced when she needed to prove she was alone in order to claim child support for the issue of a previous relationship, but they were actually only together for three months:

"Billy said he was going home to Scotland. It was a little bit strange when my new husband disappeared but I didn't worry about it because I thought he'd come home again. Billy just left. He didn't keep in touch by letter or telephone."

Chloe decided not to follow her husband to bring him home.

"I had children from a previous marriage and couldn't leave them on their own," she said. "I also couldn't afford to leave home, jump on a plane to Scotland and start looking for him. I didn't know how to contact Billy. I tried to reach him through Veronica but I guess he was too busy. He never would talk to me.

"I never spoke to him again. It was a strange situation."

Chloe Dummar, as she is today, says that Billy was the one:

"If Billy was alive today I'd tell him that I still loved him. I can't explain why I feel like that after more than 30 years - you can't tell your heart what to do.

"I never stopped loving him. I didn't fall in love again and never remarried.

"It was pretty devastating when the man I loved vanished off the face of the earth.

"It took a long time to get over Billy. To be honest, I don't know if I ever did. He was special."

It's a sad story, no less the sad for ending up in a tabloid paper.