Larry King’s widow Shawn says she will go to court to fight for a share of $2m estate the TV host divided between his children

  • Widowed Shawn King has claimed she will go to court after being written out of the late Larry King’s will
  • It was revealed last week that King added a handwritten note to his will in 2019
  • It cut Shawn out and divided his $2million estate between his 5 children
  • He and Shawn had filed for divorce two months beforehand
  • Yet Shawn claims they had reconciled and has suggested that King was influenced into writing her out
  • The couple’s divorce had not yet been finalized, already making the will complex
  • Two of King’s children also died in 2020 leaving questions about their share

Larry King’s widow has claimed she was blindsided to learn that the legendary journalist left a handwritten amendment in his will that completely wrote her out of any inheritance.

King reportedly added the note on October 17, 2019, advising for an even-split of his $2million estate to his five children in the event of his death.

It would have been written two months after he filed for divorce from his seventh wife, Shawn, who has said that she will now go to court to fight for her share as she claims that King could have been pressured into the change.

The 61-year-old claims that she and King had a ‘very watertight family estate plan’ they put it together ‘as a couple’ in 2015.

Shawn King, left, has claimed she will go to court over her former husband Larry’s will

King reportedly added the note in 2019, advising for an even-split of his $2-million estate to his five children, leaving Shawn out. King is pictured in 2018 with his Shawn and their two sons

Shawn claims that she and King (pictured together in 2016) had a ‘very watertight family estate plan’ they put it together ‘as a couple’ in 2015. She says she is going to challenge his new will

‘It still exists, and it is the legitimate will. Period,’ she told Page Six.

‘And I fully believe it will hold up, and my attorneys are going to be filing a response, probably by the end of the day.’

The issue of King’s inheritance was already problematic before Shawn threatened legal action.

King had said in the amendment he wished for the money to be split evenly between his five children: Andy, Chaia, Larry Jr., Cannon, and Chance.

However, Andy and Chaia both died within a month of each other in 2020.

It was made even more complex because the host’s split from Shawn was not yet complete at the time of his death last month.

The pair – who had been married for 22 years, the longest of any of King’s eight marriages – filed for divorce in August 2019 but it had not yet been settled in court.

Shawn claimed to Page Six that she had become close with her former husband once more, despite a rumored estrangement when they first filed for divorce, and they spoke to each other every day.

‘Based on the timeline, it just doesn’t make sense,’ she said of their alleged estrangement and reconciliation.

‘It beats me!’ she also responded when asked about why he may have amended his will. 

She added that Chance, 21, and Cannon, 20 – her sons with King – were also ‘shocked’ to learn that she had been written out of the inheritance.

Shawn said she was thankful she was able to speak with Larry, the father of her sons Chance, 21, and Cannon, 20, on video call before his death. Chance is seen in the center embracing his father. Cannon is seen on the right. Dallen Engemann, nephew to the boys is pictured left

Larry King with his wife Shawn and five children at a surprise 80th birthday in 2013

Andy, Larry Jr. Chaia, Larry, and Shawn King with Chance and Cannon in the foreground in an undated picture of the host and his five children. Andy and Chaia died in 2020

Larry and Shawn King with his daughter Chaia who died last year of lung cancer

‘They are not happy about this,’ Shawn claimed, simply responding ‘yes’ and not elaborating further when questioned about whether King was influenced into attaching the amendment.

If Shawn is successful in winning a share of the money, it would likely only net her $300,000, as the $2million could be divided between her, King’s three surviving children, and the descendants of Andy and Chaia.

‘It’s the principle,’ she claimed of her legal challenge.

King died of sepsis on January 23 at the age of 87 in Los Angeles after battling COVID-19.

Shawn previously said that he was ‘ready to go’ as he fought off an infection in the hospital after beating the coronavirus.

King is believed to have caught coronavirus from a health care worker visiting his home, a source told NBC. 

One of his sons, who has not been named, had also tested positive, they said.

King’s advanced age and poor health placed him at elevated risk. He had suffered numerous health issues in the past, including a heart attack, prostate and lung cancer, a stroke, and type two diabetes.

On Saturday, his cause of death was confirmed as sepsis, likely triggered by a bacterial infection.

His death was not directly related to his hospitalization for COVID-19 in December, according to his death certificate obtained by People.

Shawn has said that King’s last words to her were over a video call from the hospital: ‘I love you, take care of the boys.’

Larry King and sons Cannon and Chance with wife Shawn King and son Larry King, Jr. in 2009

Shawn and Larry had been married for 22 years, the longest of any of King’s eight marriages, but filed for divorce in August 2019. It had not yet been settled in court

She told Entertainment Tonight: ‘It was an infection, it was sepsis. Well, he was finally ready to go, I will tell you that.

‘You know, he never wanted to go but his sweet little body was just, it had just been hit so many times with so many things and once we heard the word Covid, all of our hearts just sank.

‘But he beat it, you know, he beat it, but it did take its toll and then the unrelated infection finally is what took him, but boy, he was not gonna go down easily.’

While heartbroken, Shawn said she grateful for how Larry’s death put things into perspective, saying: ‘Death is maybe the great equalizer, I think.

‘You know, when you experience it with people who we really, really love, all the other noise and the nonsense that could be surrounding, it just goes away, and the family goes close together. And that’s what happened. You know, it was beautiful.’  

Chance and Cannon were reported to be at their dad’s side when he passed.

Larry also has 59-year-old son Larry King, Jr. from his marriage to Annette Kaye.

Larry and Shawn King are seen in 1997, the year they married, above

As an homage to the late great, Shawn – who is 26-years younger that Larry – said everyone wore his signature suspenders to the funeral service. They’re seen in 2006 above

His sons remembered him in joint statement shared to Facebook shortly after news of King’s death, writing: ‘We are heartbroken over our father’s death, and together with our extended family mourn his passing.’

The three noted that, while ‘the world knew Larry King as a great broadcaster and interviewer,’ he ‘was the man who lovingly obsessed over’ their daily schedules.

In addition to caring for their well-being, the trio said their father took pride in their accomplishments, regardless if they were ‘large, small, or imagined’.

The amendment to King’s will had said that it ‘should replace all previous writings’.

He added that in the event of his death, he wanted ‘100 percent’ of his funds to be ‘divided equally among my children Andy, Chaia, Larry Jr, Chance and Cannon.’ 

However, his son, Andy, died of a heart attack in July, and his daughter, Chaia, died in August after being diagnosed with lung cancer. 

King had five children and nine grandchildren, as well as four great-grandchildren. 

He was also known for his string of high-profile romances and unsuccessful marriages, eight in total to seven different women, including Playboy Bunny Alene Akins.

King was buried in a small private ceremony. All in attendance wore suspenders in honor of his signature style.  


Larry was known for his string of high-profile romances and unsuccessful marriages, eight in total to seven different women. 

In his 1982 autobiography, Larry King described himself as a great date, but a lousy husband. Part of his problem was due to an abiding need to be seen with models and celebrated beauties. 

1. FREDA MILLER (1952-1953; annulled)

King’s first walk down the aisle was with his high school sweetheart Freda Miller at 18, but the union was annulled the following year at the behest of her parents.

2. ANNETTE KAYE (1961-1961) 
King then married his second wife, Annette Kaye in 1961 but they separated within months. 

Their relationship was brief but fruitful and resulted in a son that King didn’t meet until 33 years later. 

‘I knew there was a Larry King Jr out there, I’d heard that, but I didn’t know he was mine. The marriage was very short and she told me if it’s a boy, I’m gonna name him Larry King Jr,’ explained the elder King to The New York Post in 2009. ‘Then I never heard again.’  

3. ALENE AKINS (1961-1963) (1967-1972) 

Larry King (right) stands with Playboy Bunny Alene Akins

Shortly after his relationship with Kaye was over, King went on to marry Playboy Bunny Alene Akins with whom he adopted a son named Andy and had a daughter named Chaia.

King and Akins separated after a couple of years, only to remarry again in 1967 and divorce for a second, final time in 1972.


During his four-year separation from Akins, King found time to wed his fourth wife, Mary ‘Mickey’ Sutphin, with whom he had a daughter named Kelly. 

Kelly was later formally adopted by Sutphin’s second husband.

5. SHARON LEPORE (1976-1983) 

Larry King and fifth wife Sharon Lepore 

In 1976 King tied the knot with a former math teacher and production assistant named Sharon Lepore. 

The union lasted seven years, making it King’s second longest marriage to date. 

Two years into the marriage King declared bankruptcy, owing more than $300,000. He and Sharon were divorced in 1982. 

6. JULIE ALEXANDER (1989-1992) 

Larry King is pictured with his sixth wife (and seventh marriage), Julie Alexander in 1990

He remained single for a long stretch of six years between his sixth and seventh marriage to Philadelphia-based businesswoman Julie Alexander. 

In the summer of 1989, King met Julie  and proposed on the very first date. They married three months later, were separated by 1990 and formally divorced two years later. ‘I love being in love,’ he told Anderson Cooper in a 2009 interview.

7. SHAWN SOUTHWICK (1997-2019) 

King was last married to Shawn Southwick, with whom he shares two sons, Chance and Cannon

In 1997, King married his seventh and last wife, Shawn Southwick – a singer, actress and TV host that was 26-years his junior. 

The couple married in a Los Angeles hospital room three days before King underwent heart surgery to clear a clogged blood vessel. They welcomed two sons, Chance, born March 1999, and Cannon, born May 2000.

On their tenth wedding anniversary in 2007, Southwick joked that she was ‘the only wife to have lasted into the two digits.’ Three years later, the couple filed for divorce in 2010 after Shawn had an affair with her son’s much younger baseball coach. At the same time, rumors were swirling that King was having an affair with Shawn’s sister, which both parties vehemently denied.

The couple reconciled but eventually called it quits after 22-years of marriage in August 2019. Southwick said she was ‘totally blind sighted’ by King’s bombshell court filing.

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