Gayle King’s ex-husband praises her Sports Illustrated cover after she joked about sending it him

‘Bravo to you Gayle … You Look Fantastic!’ King’s ex says

Amber Raiken
New York
Monday 20 May 2024 18:26 BST
(Getty Images)

Gayle King’s ex-husband William Bumpus has applauded herSports Illustrated cover after she joked about sending it to him.

Bumpus praised the magazine cover of his ex, which saw her pose in a patterned one-piece, in a statement shared with Page Six on 19 May. His remark came days after she quipped to Entertainment Tonight about sending Bumpus the magazine cover, while she wondered what he was “saying” about it.

In his response to the cover, Bumpus made it clear that he’s impressed by his ex, before poking fun at their previous relationship.

“Well, I can mark off one more item on my highly unlikely to ever happen bucket list! My teenage fantasy of hooking up with a Sports Illustrated model has finally come true,” the lawyer said.

He went on to cheer for his former wife, continuing: “WOW! Bravo to you Gayle… You look fantastic! Bravo to Sports Illustrated for selecting YOU!”

After acknowledging that the journalist was “beautiful, inside and out”, Bumpus expressed how grateful he’s been for their friendship over the years, as they share two, now-adult children: Kirby, 38, and William Bumpus, Jr, 37.

“I appreciate you more and more as time goes on, as a trailblazer, and also when I see our phenomenal kids and grandkids!” he concluded. “I am proud of you and continue to wish you nothing but happiness. Enjoy!”

In 1993, King and Bumpus announced their split after 11 years of marriage. More than 20 years later, King discussed the breakup and publicly accused Bumpus of cheating on her in 1990.

When asked which living person she despised most in the world during a 2016 Q&A session with Vanity Fair, she responded: “‘Despise’ is a strong word. I’m not a huge fan of the woman who I caught naked with my now ex-husband on June 24 1990, at 9.16pm, but I don’t remember the details.”

Days later, Bumpus’s representative responded to King’s remark with a statement and apology. “I have been haunted with this life altering choice. Though I have dealt with this privately,” his representative shared with Page Six at the time. “I publicly apologise for the major transgression that dramatically changed all of our lives.”

He went on to express his respect for his ex, before he praised her for “how she handled herself with grace” amid the cheating scandal. He also applauded her skills as a mother.

“Despite the situation, she kept our children, as well as my relationship and involvement with them, as a clear priority. Gayle was a great wife, an excellent mother and a fantastic co-parent,” he said. “I am eternally grateful for all that she has done and continues to do to enrich my life and the lives of our incredible adult children.”

Since their breakup, King and her ex have maintained an amicable relationship as co-parents and friends. After raising their children, the journalist opened up about what their household was like when they were younger.

“When my kids were coming up, I did not have one of these households where I want to be your friend,” she explained, while appearing on the We Are Family podcast in 2022. “I had a very clear, I am the boss here. This is not a democracy.”

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