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Carl Thomas Dean (Get To Know About Dolly Parton’s Husband)

Carl Thomas Dean was born in Nashville, Tennessee, on July 20, 1942. Virginia Bates and Edgar Henry Dean were his parents. He owned an asphalt-laying business in his early twenties, but that was about the only thing that was known about his growing up and history.

Carl’s parents’ names and educational history are not widely known. Being the husband of Dolly Parton, an internationally recognized American singer, is what gave him popularity and recognition. However, he was more well-known for valuing privacy than for being Dolly Parton’s spouse. He never bet or profited from Dolly’s fame.

In actuality, Dolly and Dean were diametrically opposed. He preferred to remain indoors, away from the prying eyes of the journalists and the crosshairs of the cameras, unlike Dolly.

Now, let’s talk about Thomas’ relationship with Dolly Parton.

Love at First Meetup

They both respect their relationship
They both respect their relationship.

Dolly Parton is well-known for her several original love songs, such as “Pure & Simple” and “Say Forever You’ll Be Mine.” From the very beginning, it appears that her love story was written with the same poetic lyricism as her songs.

It was 1964, and Dolly Parton had just moved from her Sevierville, Tennessee, hometown and was spending her first day in Music City. She was in front of the Wishy Washy Laundromat in Nashville when Carl Dean, a guy operating a white Chevrolet pickup truck, ‘holled’ at her.

At the time, she was 18 and he was 21. He warned her that her exposed clothing might cause her to become burnt.

He followed her inside the laundry and started up a conversation. She denied his first request for a date, but she did extend an invitation for them to hang out the next day when she was looking after her nephew. He paid Dolly a visit the next day, but she refused to even let him inside; instead, they just sat on the porch.

He stopped over each day that week, and they would hang out on the porch. The two had never had the opportunity to travel until her aunt finally had a day off from work.

Without wasting any time, Carl Dean drove her right to the home of his parents and dropped her off there. When he first saw her, he knew she was the one he was looking for.

The Dating Lasts for Two Years

They spent two years dating. And Dolly described how these dates often proceeded in an interview with People.

She said that the two of them would drive up to the McDonald’s drive-through window and order their meals together. Dolly observed that Dean only visited locations where he felt most at ease.

Decision of Marriage

On May 30, 1996, the pair decided to get married in spite of Dolly’s record company, Monument, requesting that she postpone the ceremony for a year to protect her career. They were concerned that her career might be hampered by getting married so soon, but Dolly answered in typical Southern style by saying she didn’t want to wait.

They exchanged married vows in a private ceremony at a little Baptist church in Ringgold, Georgia, to avoid drawing attention from Tennessee newspapers. Dolly’s mother, Avie Lee, sewed her an insignificant white frock and purchased a tiny Bible and flower for her.

Because it wouldn’t feel like she married at all, she didn’t want to be married in a courtroom. They searched out a church in the area, where Bishop Don Duvall married them in front of Dolly’s mother and the bishop’s wife as witnesses. The pair then posed for photos on the stairs outside the church.

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The Secret to a Long-Lasting Love

Dolly’s journey to stardom in the country music business began in the late 1960s. It was not a problem at all for her private lover Carl Dean. In fact, Dolly had to leave for a radio interview the day after their 1966 wedding and postponed their honeymoon so she could focus on her responsibilities.

Because of Dolly’s schedule, they missed each other for periods of time, but that didn’t weaken their marriage. She stated that, despite rumors to the contrary, Dean was very much genuine. She remarked that they both appreciate each other’s freedom and keep their personal lives very private.

Dolly Parton while performing
Dolly Parton has a number of well-known original love songs

Dean’s Simplicity and Privacy in Relationship

Dean was a reserved, reluctant gentleman who valued privacy and had no desire for stardom. He also understood that he would never have a moment of peace once he made the decision to go out there with Dolly.

She heard him say that he picked her, not her world. She honored his requests and made every effort to keep him out of the spotlight.

The reason they persisted for so long was keeping their lives distinct and connected, as well as the fact that Dolly remained aside (which they began to laugh about). Because they weren’t constantly seeing each other’s faces, it really made sense to her, which is why it worked.

Mutual Understanding

Their time together is made even more enjoyable by their mutual appreciation and respect for one another as well as their amazing sense of humor. They also enjoyed taking road trips in their modest RV whenever they had the chance.

They both enjoyed the food she cooked, so she would carry it in a picnic basket. Then they would go locate a park or a riverside and simply enjoy themselves while having a picnic. Sometimes, as long as the bed was clean and there was a restroom, they pulled up to a Days Inn motel.

Reason for Having No Kids

She had a partial operation in 1984 to address her endometriosis, a condition about which she had been largely silent. The removal of her whole uterus and a portion of her cervix sent her into severe despair.

After this, she even thought of committing suicide. She described it as a really dreadful period for her in a 2008 statement to reporters.

It is still possible to get pregnant after undergoing this treatment because of recent scientific advancements. Dolly’s decision not to have children, however, turned out to be a wise one.

Furthermore, it was a clear indication of how pleased and happy she was in their relationship, even when there were only two of them.

A true example of deep love
A true example of deep love

The Renewal of Vows

Dolly Parton and Carl Dean renewed their vows in a private ceremony at their chapel in their Nashville home on May 30, 2016, in honor of their 50th Golden Jubilee. She described the events leading up to their second wedding in an interview with Rolling Stone.

She prepared for their special day by dressing up in the most gorgeous gown. Indeed, she also dressed up as Carl Dean, who then emerged from the scene looking like a “handsome dude out of Hollywood.”

Only a small group of people—family and friends—were invited since the hosts didn’t want to organize something significant that may spark conflict or trouble. Everything was done with skill and perfection.

A Promising Happy Life

Additionally, Dean publicly declared his love for Dolly. He claimed that his initial impression of the girl was that he would marry her, and his second impression was that she was gorgeous. And he wouldn’t change a thing about the last 50 years.

And after 57 years of marriage, the pair still goes on casual, spontaneous dates to maintain their chemistry. In the spring, Dean would also always give Dolly a bouquet and write her a poem, which she would describe as precious and captivating of the time they spent together.

Now, let’s learn more about some of the love songs by Dolly Parton.

Song NameAlbum NameReleasing Year
Islands in the StreamEyes That See in the Dark1983
Marry MeLittle Sparrow2001
I Will Always Love YouJolene1974
Love Is Like a ButterflyLove Is Like a Butterfly1974
The Day I Fell In Love (Love Theme)Beethoven’s 2nd1993
My Eyes Can Only See YouLove Is Like a Butterfly1974
You’re the Only OneGreat Balls of Fire1979
Think About LoveReal Love1985
Tie Our Love (in a Double Knot)Real Love1985
Highlight of My LifeJolene1974
Songs that show her love for her husband
Let’s watch this video about Dolly Parton’s marriage to her husband Carl Dean.


  • Carl Thomas Dean is a simple, caring, reserved, and longing person.
  • He has no desire to be a celebrity though he is the husband of a well-known Country singer, Dolly Parton.
  • Thomas has a happy relationship with his wife despite the fact that they are polar opposites in their thoughts.
  • Even though he hardly ever uses social media, he actively promotes his beloved wife’s music profession.

Click here to view the visual story version of this article.

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