Skip to main contentSkip to footer

What happened to Garth Brooks' ex-wife - their relationship today

Garth welcomed three children with his first wife


What happened to Garth Brooks' ex-wife - their relationship today© Featureflash Photo Agency
March 8, 2024
Share this:

Garth Brooks, 62, has been happily married to Trisha Yearwood for almost 20 years, but before their wedding in 2005 Garth was previously married to his college sweetheart, Sandy Mahl. 

Here is all we know about Sandy, and their relationship today… 

Garth Brooks and Sandy Mahl during 18th Annual American Music Awards © Ron Galella
Garth Brooks and Sandy Mahl during 18th Annual American Music Awards

Where did Garth Brook meet his first wife? 

Garth wed Sandy Mahl on May 24, 1986. They had met at Oklahoma State University where he starred on the track and field team in the javelin throw and studied for his degree. 

Sandy was three years younger, and they married when she was 21 and Garth was 24. 

Garth Brooks beside his wife Sandy Mahl in 1995© Vinnie Zuffante
Garth Brooks beside his wife Sandy Mahl in 1995

Who is Sandy Mahl, Garth Brooks' first wife? 

Sandy was a songwriter, co-writing the track ‘I’ve Got A Good Thing Going,’ which was included on Garth's self-titled debut album in 1989. She is also the co-founder of Wild Heart Ranch, an Oklahoma-based rehabilitation facility "for all species of wildlife needing orphan support, injury treatment or disease recovery". 

Sandy remains on their board of directors, where she is known as Sandy Mahl Brooks Lynch. Wild Heart bills itself as "a stable and capable place where all wild animals can receive professional medical and supportive care until they can be released back in the wild," while the e veterinary team at the Tulsa Zoo "lends their time and hospital for the bald eagles that regularly arrive at Wild Heart". 

Garth Brook beside his wife Sandy Mahl holding their infant daughter August© Vinnie Zuffante
Garth Brook beside his wife Sandy Mahl holding their infant daughter August

How many children does Garth Brooks have? 

Garth and Sandy welcomed three daughters together: Taylor Mayne Pearl (born 1992), August Anna (born 1994), and Allie Colleen Brooks (born 1996). 

When did Garth Brooks get divorced? 

The pair announced they were getting divorced in October 2000 but the filing revealed that they had split in March 1999, after 13 years of marriage. The divorce was finalized in December 2001. 

Garth Brooks with his wife Sandy Mahl at the ACM Awards in May 1999; they had split two months prior © Vinnie Zuffante
Garth Brooks with his wife Sandy Mahl at the ACM Awards in May 1999; they had split two months prior

Why did Garth Brooks get divorced? 

Garth's fame got too big that it damaged their relationship, Sandy once claimed. 

"People constantly wanting your attention and yanking and pulling on him," she explained in the documentary Garth Brooks: The Road I'm On. "He'd be gone eight to 10 weeks at a time. He'd come home, and there would be number-one parties, or shows, or CMAs, or ACMs, American Music Awards, so it was constantly going. But we both grew apart really, really quickly." 

"I don't think either of us had stopped to think about how this would change our lives," she later added. 

How much did Garth Brooks' divorce cost?

When the divorce was finalized on December 17, 2001.

Sandy received a whopping $125 million as a settlement, making it one of the most expensive settlements in the country music industry .

Is Garth Brooks friends with his ex-wife? 

The pair remain amicable as they continue to parent their three grown children. Following Sandy's claims of why their marriage ended, Garth told Fox News that he had "respect and love for her". 

"I heard things from her that she told me our whole life, but I didn't [really] hear them until now. And so my respect and love for her is through the roof for what she went through and how she's handled it, as well," he said.

Sign up to HELLO Daily! for the best royal, celebrity and lifestyle coverage

By entering your details, you are agreeing to HELLO! Magazine User Data Protection Policy. You can unsubscribe at any time. For more information, please click here.

More Celebrity News

See more