Inside Patsy Cline's Relationship With Charlie Dick

After the tragic death of the country superstar Patsy Cline, her widower, Charlie Dick, would drink and listen to her records constantly, even after he remarried. On March 5, 1963, the small plane in which Cline was a passenger crashed into the side of a wooded hill near Camden, Tennessee. Dick kept their room exactly as Cline had left it, giving the eerie impression she was still there, per "Honky Tonk Angel: The Intimate Story of Patsy Cline."

Dick kept Cline's memory alive not just for himself but for the world, helping to have her music reissued and promoting her legacy until his death in 2015. But their six years of marriage were anything but easy. Dick admitted physically assaulting Cline on at least one occasion and was a heavy drinker, and both of them allegedly cheated on each other during their relationship, per the Associated Press and "Sweet Dreams: The World of Patsy Cline."

The early days

Charlie Dick was a Linotype operator at The Winchester Star when they first met in 1956. "I started going to dances," Charlie Dick told PBS. "And I started going to the one in Maryville, Virginia ... where this group called the Kountry Krackers were playing and we went there for a real long time before I ever seen Patsy ... She came in there and started working for [the band] on Friday nights." The two of them had similar backgrounds — they grew up relatively impoverished without fathers and left school before graduating. They also loved to have fun. "We were out to have a good time with life," Dick told The Los Angeles Times in 1985.

Cline was married at the time. The following year, after she'd left her first husband, Gerald Cline, she and Dick began dating and married on September 15, 1957, per The Los Angeles Times. "Charlie was a ladies' man, but he was crazy about Patsy," her friend and fellow country star Loretta Lynn recalled in her book, "Me & Patsy Kickin' Up Dust: My Friendship with Patsy Cline." "He'd been courting her for years. They were wild for each other."

The good and bad times

As Patsy Cline's star rose, her home life became harder. She and Charlie Dick had two children, Julie and Allen "Randy" Dick, and the singer had to work constantly to support her family, according to "Patsy Cline: The Making of an Icon." It was a balancing act between motherhood and a music career made all the harder by Dick, whose drinking and temper took a toll on their marriage.

Dick played down their fights in various interviews over the years. "We argued, no doubt about that, but the fights didn't last," he told the LA Times. "We'd raise hell for five minutes, then that was all." He also alleged that if he did hit her, "after the second time, she woulda picked up a chair and hit me over the head. Patsy wasn't mean — God, there wasn't a mean bone in her body — but you didn't cross her." On one occasion, Cline called the police on Dick for domestic abuse, and the police arrested him, per the AP. But they reconciled and were still married when Cline died at age 30.

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.