HomeAmerican Entertainment‘Bonanza’ Icon Michael Landon Insisted His Divorce Wasn’t Due to Wanting Younger Women

‘Bonanza’ Icon Michael Landon Insisted His Divorce Wasn’t Due to Wanting Younger Women

by Samantha Whidden
(Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images)

Years after his marriage to Majorie Lynn Noe came to end, Bonanza star Michael Landon insisted his divorce wasn’t due to him wanting younger women. 

During his May 1985 interview with People, the Bonanza star declared that you don’t just dissolve a relationship to go to bed with someone 20 years younger. “You have to have a major difference and a deep-rooted need to stop a relationship after as many years as I was married,” Landon stated. He then declared that he would have done anything to make the relationship with Noe to continue.

“But I could not,” Landon continued. “It’s not just difficult for the wife. It is painful for the husband too. But it is far better than letting it stay the way it was.”

The Bonanza castmate also insisted that Noe was actually a much happier person after the divorce. She partly agreed. “I was too busy being the kind of wife he wanted me to be. I lost myself little by little and I made Michael my god.”

While speaking about the relationship she had with the Bonanza star following the divorce, Noe explained, “We speak without talking. Our conversations consists of ‘When will you pick up the children?’”

The Bonanza star and Noe were married from 1963 to 1982. They had five children together, including Noe’s daughter Cheryl from her first marriage. Landon was married three times and had nine children between his three wives. He married Cindy Clerico, a makeup artist on Little House on the Prairie in 1983. 

‘Bonanza’ Star Michael Landon Revealed More Details About His Troubled Mother

Also during his interview with People, Bonanza star Michael Landon spoke about his childhood and his mother. “I always wanted to get away from my family,” Landon stated. He also described his mother as a childish person who was always attempting suicide. 

“She would stick her head in the oven. But she always had kneepads on the floor or one window opened. [In a family like that] you get to thinking, ‘Gee, if it’s Tuesday it must be suicide.’”

The Bonanza castmate also admitted he didn’t want to have a family even close to what his parents had. He then spoke about his daughter Cheryl struggling with prescription drug addiction and even spoke about the tragic car wreck she was involved in. “She was coming home from a fraternity-sorority gather with four friends in a little Volkwagon. They were struck by a Ford going in excess of 80 miles an hour.”

Landon shared that the 1973 accident killed everyone but Cheryl, but it broke everything in her. “All her ribs, her neck, you name it.”

Landon also revealed that he made a “foxhole dead” with God. If his daughter was spared, he would do his best to make a product that would help people. Which led to Highway to Heaven.