Around the world, she’s known as the teacher who went to jail for sexually assaulting a 12-year-old school student, before later marrying him. But long before her relationship with Vili Fualaau began, Mary Kay Letourneau was known to many as simply a loving mother of four and a wife.
In 1996, 34-year-old Mary Kay was living with her husband, Steve Letourneau. They were raising Jacqueline, Mary Claire, Nicholas and Steven Jr together and living what Steve thought was an idyllic life.
What Steve couldn’t have known at the time, though, was that his college girlfriend turned wife was abusing a 12-year-old boy who was only a year and a half older than their eldest child. A boy who would later become Mary Kay’s second husband.
Finding love letters between his wife and her pre-teen student, Steve Letourneu’s marriage not only fell apart but also led to Mary Kay being found guilty of second-degree child rape after a relative reported the illegal relationship to police.
With his life shattered, Steve filed for divorce, got full custody of their four children, eventually remarried, had more children, and moved to Alaska. He stayed silent about what happened, but he moved on.
Mary Kay, on the other hand, went on to marry Vili less than one year after she was released from prison.
The pair, who had two daughters together when Vili was just a teenager, were married for almost 12 years until they ended their relationship in May 2017.