Mary Kay Letourneau Still Married to Vili Fualaau at Time of Death Despite Legal Separation

Mary Kay Letourneau, the former teacher who was jailed for raping student Vili Fualaau before later marrying him, was still married to him at the time of her death earlier this month. Letourneau and Falaau separated in 2017, but her death certificate appears to confirm that she never completed the divorce. The 58-year-old Letourneau died on July 6 in Des Moines, Washington after a battle with stage 4 cancer.

Letourneau's death certificate listed her marital status as "married" and listed Fualaau as her surviving spouse, reports TMZ. The document listed metastatic colorectal cancer as the cause of death. Fualaau, 37, filed for legal separation back in May 2017, TMZ reported at the time. They married in 2005 and finalized the legal separation in August 2019. They had two children together, Audrey, 22, and Georgia, 21. Letourneau also had four children with her first husband, Steve Letourneau.

Although they were separated, Falaau was by Letourneau's side at the time of her death. Falaau and Letourneau's family issued a statement two days after her death, thanking people who reached out to offer their condolences. "We are endlessly grateful for the care and kindness received from the amazing professionals involved in Mary's care," they said. "Likewise, the kindness and compassion of friends and others who learned of her condition along the way proved an uplifting gift to us all." They asked for their privacy to be respected and said they did not plan on issuing further statements. They planned to "celebrate and honor the wishes of our wife, mother, daughter, grandmother, sister, beloved family member and loyal friend and concentrate on caring for one another."

Letourneau was first arrested in 1996 after starting a sexual relationship with Fualaau, who was 12 or 13 at the time. The teacher was 34 at the time and first pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree child rape. She was sentenced to six months in prison, but after she was arrested a second time for having sex with Fualaau, her original seven and a half-year jail sentence was reinstated. Letourneau was released from prison in 2004 and had to register as a sex offender. A year later, she married Fualaau, and the marriage got national media attention.


A source told PEOPLE Letourneau "made peace" with both Fualaau and her first husband. "When it was clear that she wasn't going to make it, she made her peace with everyone in her life," the source said. "She died having made peace with Vili, Steve [Letourneau, her first husband], and all six of her kids. Everyone said everything that needed to be said."