Alan Jackson and his wife Denise have long been one of country music fans’ favorite couples, but there’s a lot more to their decades-long love story than meets the eye.
The couple met in Newnan, Ga., as teenagers, and they were high school sweethearts. Denise didn’t even have to change her name when they wed on Dec. 15, 1979; her maiden name was also Jackson.
Denise played a major role in helping her husband achieve his dreams of country music stardom when, early on in their marriage when she was working as a flight attendant, she spotted Glen Campbell at the airport. She approached him and explained that her husband was an aspiring country singer, and Campbell gave her a business card for his Nashville publishing company. That company signed Alan Jackson to his first songwriting deal and helped the young newcomer establish valuable contacts in town.