Reba McEntire was married to her first husband, Charlie Battles, from 1976 to 1987. The county singer described the moment she realized it was time to separate ties and get a divorce.
How Reba McEntire met her first husband
McEntire describes her first husband as “the first great love of my life,” in her book Reba: My story. She says she met Battles during the rodeo. She knew about it before they even met.
McEntire says Battles was a rodeo star. He made a name for himself as the world’s most acclaimed lead keeper in the International Rodeo Association from 1970 to 1972. McEntire was built by Battles’ “rough and elegant” construction and his charisma. She didn’t think he would be interested in her, but she seems to have been wrong.
One day, while Battles was walking his horse at the rodeo, McEntire came over to say hello. However, McEntire later found out he was married with two children.
Three years later, in 1974, McEntire was at a bar. She says she was drinking and having fun. According to her, Battles pulled her in his arms. The next thing she knew, he kissed her on the mouth. After that happened, McEntire says she found out that Battles decided to leave his wife. A few months later, they were a couple.
Reba McEntire began to notice problems in her relationship
McEntire and Battles were married on June 21, 1976. She was happy to get married and start her new life with her husband. However, she says that there were problems that arose during their marriage.
McEntire says one thing she noticed was that Battles was incompetent about her career as a country singer. He didn’t look happy about what she had done for a living. According to McEntire, he seemed to think his job as a lead keeper was more important.
McEntire also says there was a lot of tension with her children. She says she did not feel included. She remembered one day when Battles would not let himself in when he and his sons were going to feed cattle, something she and her husband would always do together. According to her, instead of saying he needed time with his sons, he said there was no place for her, and fled.
The troubles between McEntire and Battles went into her professional life. As things started to slow down with Battles’ career, she hired him to help with her band. However, McEntire says he was very serious about his presence. She says he had an approach that went against the band members. The singer says that Battles even called her a “wench” in front of her band mates.
For now Reba McEntire knew she had to get a divorce
McEntire says that over time, Battles went from defense to “control.” It was the last straw for her when Battles said he stole money from her. With so much tension between the couple, McEntire asked Battles not to join her for her next show.
Battles became angry, so she asked him if he needed any money as a way to calm him down. McEntire says he responded by telling her he didn’t need money because he took $ 400 from her purse.
McEntire got angry, and at one point, she says Battles looked as if he was about to hit her with a shaving hook she bought him for Christmas. She says that everything that happened in their marriage along with these events made it clear that it was time to get a divorce. She says her gut feelings told her it was “time to get out.”
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