Naomi Judd 'tricked' ex-husband Michael Ciminella into marriage by falsely claiming Wynonna was his daughter
WILLIAMSON COUNTY, TENNESSEE: Late country queen Naomi Judd's first husband reportedly claimed she tricked him into marriage by claiming she was pregnant with his child. Michael Ciminella confirmed that Wynonna, who came into this world shortly after he and Naomi tied the knot in 1964, was not his biological daughter.
Ciminella revealed that Wynonna Judd was actually fathered by one of Naomi's high school classmates, Charles Jordan. He admitted he had sex with her as a teenager but wasn't aware she had also slept with Jordan. The paternity scandal was reportedly swept under the rug for decades, but became apparent in the complicated relationship Naomi had with her singing-partner daughter.
"She came to me and told me she was pregnant," Ciminella said of Naomi in a 1995 interview, as quoted by Radar Online. "I didn't assume for a moment that an 18-year-old girl whom I had known for quite some time would tell lies about something like that." He alleged that Naomi, who was a senior in high school, misled him "because she thought my family had more money" than Jordan's. According to Ciminella, he realized Wynonna was not his offspring when she was 3, shortly before the birth of the couple's daughter, Ashley Judd. "I just looked at her real carefully, and I knew," he told to his hometown paper, the Ashland Independent, adding that Naomi later admitted to him that Jordan was indeed the father, but no one ever informed Wynonna.
According to Radar Online, the mystery began to unravel when Naomi's former lover Terry Steele revealed how she had told him Wynonna was not Ciminella's child, but that she eventually told her daughter who her real father was. According to Ciminella, Wynonna confronted her mother about the web of lies. "Her mother told her it was because she was afraid she'd throw her out of the act," he claimed. The ex reportedly said he spoke out only because Naomi painted him in a bad light in her biography, 'Love Can Build a Bridge'. He added, "Naomi has spent her career saying what a horrible person I was when she, in fact, is the one who didn't do what is, quote, right. She let me take the rap for something I did not do. I have been lied about and ridiculed in my hometown." Charles Jordan later revealed he was hoping to meet his biological daughter someday, but only if she wanted to. The story was confirmed by the family's publicist, who said Naomi did not deny that Jordan was Wynonna's real father.
MEAWW previously reported how Naomi left behind a cruel suicide note about Wynonna before ending her own life in April 2022. The troubled singer scribbled on a post-it pad, "Do not let Wy come to my funeral. She’s mentally ill," underlining the word "not."
A family source told Radar Online that Wynonna attended her mother's funeral nonetheless. “Naomi had suffered from mental illness and suicidal thoughts for years, and Wynonna suffered right along with her,” the source told the outlet. “They toured the world and became music superstars as The Judds, but that also caused a lot of conflict.” The insider insisted that Wynonna “just has to continue to believe her mother did not mean what she wrote.”