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Mary Kay Letourneau, the former teacher convicted of raping a 12-year-old student she’d go on to marry years later, reportedly left behind her estate to her former husband Vili Fualaau and the couple’s two grown daughters.
A source told People that Letourneau, who died in July after a battle with stage IV cancer, decided to leave the little money she had and her personal belongings behind for her former love and the couple’s children Georgia and Audrey, even though she and Fualaau separated in 2017.
“She loved Vili to the end,” the unidentified source told the outlet. “She had built a life with him, and he deserved to inherit what little she had.”
Letourneau left Fualaau the “photos, the memories and a lot of sentimental things” that she had acquired during her life.
“They didn’t have a ton of money, but he and the girls are going to divvy that up,” the source said. “They’re more interested in the sentimental things, though.”
Letourneau made headlines in the 1990s for her illicit relationship with Fualaau, who had been her sixth-grade student.
The then-34-year-old mother of four began the sexual relationship with Fualaau, who was 12 or 13 at the time, in 1996 and soon became pregnant with the couple’s first child together, according to The New York Times.
Letourneau gave birth in 1997 as she was waiting to be sentenced after pleading guilty to charges of second-degree child rape. She received a reduced sentence and was released after serving three months in prison.
She was ordered to stay away from Fualaau, but Letourneau violated the court order and was sent back to prison to serve out a seven-year sentence after she was caught with the teen. She gave birth to the couple’s second daughter in 1998 while behind bars.
Letourneau was released from prison in 2004 and was once again ordered to stay away from Fualaau, but he fought to have the court order removed.
The pair got married in 2005 and raised their two daughters together in Washington. Fualaau filed for legal separation in 2017, People reports.
In the years before Letourneau died at the age of 58, the two continued to have contact with one another.
"She would talk to Vili or he would call her to see how she was doing. The marriage had split up, but they still had love for each other,” Fualaau’s friend told People in July of her cancer battle. “They had children together and he would always say that she was his first love. So of course he is sad at the loss. He's sad for the girls, but he's also sad for himself."
Her attorney David Gehrke told The New York Times that Fualaau and her children had been with her when she died.
In a statement from the Letourneau and Fualaau families obtained by writer Danielle Bacher after Letourneau’s July 6 death, the families said Letourneau had “passed away peacefully” after a battle with stage IV cancer.
“Mary fought tirelessly against this terrible disease,” the families wrote. “Mary, and all of us, found great strength in having our immediate and extended family members together to join her in this arduous struggle.”
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