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Rupert Murdoch says ‘I do’ for the fifth time: ‘I knew this would be the last’


Rupert Murdoch, the 92-year-old billionaire media mogul behind Fox News and News Corp., is getting married again. Is the fifth time the charm?

He plans to say “I do” with Ann Lesley Smith, 66, a dental hygienist-turned-police chaplain and radio host.

Murdoch’s New York Post broke the news of the engagement.

It comes less than a year after Murdoch split from his fourth wife, Jerry Hall, the model and actress who shares four children with Mick Jagger. Hall married Murdoch in 2016 and they separated in 2022, just a month before Murdoch and Smith met at her home in September. Winery and Vineyard in Bel-Air.

Murdoch was also previously married to Wendi Deng from 1999 to 2013; Anna Maria Torv from 1967 to 1999; and his first wife, Patricia Booker, whom he married in 1956 and divorced in 1967.

According to the daily mailSmith was previously married to John B. Huntington, a lawyer who she said was “a scion of one of the pioneer California railroad families.” The marriage allegedly turned abusive and Ella Smith was left penniless and homeless when they divorced.

She took up modeling and Jesus, then met country-western singer and media mogul Chester Smith while volunteering as a police chaplain, according to the Daily Mail. The two married and recorded a 13-track country album together in 2005. called “captured by love.” The cover shows the two posed against a Rolls-Royce, Chester with his foot on the front bumper, holding a guitar, and Ann Lesley wearing her police chaplain uniform. Chester died in 2008 at the age of 78.

According to the Post, the media mogul proposed to Smith with an Asscher-cut diamond solitaire on St. Patrick’s Day in New York City.

“I’m a quarter Irish,” he told the Post’s Cindy Adams. “I was very nervous. I was afraid of falling in love, but I knew that this would be the last. It would be better. I’m happy.”

“For both of us it’s a gift from God,” Smith told the tabloid.

“I have been a widow for 14 years,” she continued. “Like Rupert, my husband was a businessman. He worked for local newspapers, developed television and radio stations, and helped promote Univision. So I speak Rupert’s language. We share the same beliefs.

“For perspective, it’s not my first rodeo. Approaching 70 means being in the latter half. I waited for the right moment. Friends are happy for me.”

Murdoch said he met his fiancée at his Moraga wine estate.

“She and her husband also owned a vineyard and had been in the wine business,” she said. “Last year when there were 200 people in my vineyard, I met her and we talked a bit. Two weeks later I called her.

He added: “We are both looking forward to spending the second half of our lives together.”

Murdoch may have to divide his attention between planning the wedding and Fox is facing a $1.6 billion defamation lawsuit, brought by Dominion Voting Systems, alleging that the mogul’s news network amplified inaccurate stories that Dominion rigged votes in the 2020 presidential election.

Merry C. Vega is a highly respected and accomplished news author. She began her career as a journalist, covering local news for a small-town newspaper. She quickly gained a reputation for her thorough reporting and ability to uncover the truth.

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