Dolly Parton and her husband Carl Dean have found a very special way to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary this year – the couple have decided to get married for a second time. Dolly's husband has stayed resolutely out of the spotlight throughout his wife's career, but in honour of the happy occasion will mark their 30 May anniversary in an uncharacteristically public style.
"We're going to get married again!" Dolly, 70, revealed to People this week. "I'll have a beautiful wedding dress, 'cause I didn't have a big long wedding dress when we got married, and we've got a suit for him, so we're going to dress up and take a bunch of pictures."
Dolly Parton and Carl Dean will renew their wedding vows on 30 May
The country superstar said she plans to sell the photos to benefit her Imagination Library literacy charity, an idea she was "shocked" her husband agreed too.
"My husband is a loner," she said of the 73-year-old businessman. "He doesn't particularly care about being around anybody but me. He's just always asked me to leave him out of all this. He does not like all the hullabaloo."
But, she added, "He's always been supportive. He's like a brother and a father and a friend and a husband and a lover – all of those things to me. I think he's kind of proud that we've been in it this long!"
The singer pictured in 1977 - 11 years after her wedding day
Dolly met her future husband in the Wishy Washy Laundromat on the very day she moved to Nashville in 1964, aged 18. Two years later, shortly before Dolly released her first album, they were married in Ringgold, Georgia, with only her mother there as a witness.
In the years that followed, Dolly became country music's most iconic star, while Carl stayed out of the spotlight, focusing on running his asphalt business. And don't expect to see him in the front row at his wife's shows – as of 2011, he'd only seen Dolly perform a few times.
Carl has only seen his wife perform on a handful of occasions
"No, he doesn't like to do that," Dolly told Ellen DeGeneres. "He gets nervous seeing me perform. It's almost like seeing your kid in a recital. He's afraid I'll mess up. Actually, he has seen me a time or two and it did relax him a little. He saw that I do mess up and it's OK because people are not gonna punish me for it."