'American Pie' Singer Don McLean's Wife Files for Divorce: 'She Has Chosen to Characterize Our Relationship in a Completely Distorted and Untrue Manner'

McLean said he doesn't want to "be judged in this frantic media environment"

Photo: Getty

“American Pie” singer and songwriter Don McLean’s wife has filed for divorce.

Patrisha McLean’s lawyer said that legal papers filed in Maine on Thursday cite “adultery, cruel and abusive treatment, and irreconcilable differences,” the Associated Press reports.

McLean – who has been married to his wife for 30 years – was arrested in January on domestic violence assault charges, later pleading not guilty.

Following the incident, Patrisha McLean told the Knox County Court in a statement that her husband had “terrorized” her for hours leading up to his arrest. She was later granted a protection order. In her statement, she said that Don McLean, 70, “pressed the palms of his hands against my temples and squeezed as though my head were in a vice.” She said that she has suffered from headaches since the alleged incident.

She added, “My husband has a violent temper. For the first 10 years or so, his rage was unfathomably deep and very scary.”

She said McLean had been physical with her throughout their marriage, and that McLean had said he wanted to kill her and recently threatened her with a gun, according to her statement.

Hours after Patrisha’s request for an order of protection was granted, Don McLean also issued a statement saying he is “not a villain.”

“What is occurring is the very painful breakdown of an almost 30 year relationship,” he said in his statement.

“Our hearts are broken and we must carry on. There are no winners or losers but I am not a villain,” McLean wrote.

He added, “I may never recover from this but I will try and hope to continue to entertain you all as I always have. I ask God to give us the strength to find new happiness and I hope people will realize that this will all be resolved but I hope I will not be judged in this frantic media environment.”

A statement from Patrisha later appeared on the website as well: “Don is not a monster. This is a very sad time for me and for him We had many happy times [and] years together.”

In a statement released Friday, McLean responded to the filing. “My wife has chosen divorce. She has chosen to characterize our 30 year relationship in a completely distorted and untrue manner,” he wrote on Twitter. “We raised two gentle highly educated children in an environment of laughter, music and literature. I suggest anyone interested view the movie Don McLean: American Troubadour to get an idea of our life.”




Don McLean rose to prominence during the early 1970s with “American Pie,” a song that has since been covered by dozens of artists, including Madonna.

He is booked for an Australian tour in March.

Patrisha McLean is a photographer who regularly exhibits her work.

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