“American Bandstand” icon Dick Clark, who died Thursday at the age of 82, had a connection to North Dakota in the person of his third wife, Kari, who was born Karen Wigton. Wigton grew up in St. Cloud, Minn., was homecoming queen in 1959, and graduated from St. Cloud’s Tech High School in 1960.
According to the Associated Press, Wigton graduated from North Dakota State University in 1964 and worked as an assistant for Sen. Quentin Burdick, D-N,D., in the 1960s until moving to California and going to work for Clark’s operation in 1968.
Clark and Wigton were married July 7, 1977 (7/7/77) and remained married until his death, more than 35 years. Wigton served as Clark’s executive assistant during their marriage, helping produce his many TV shows.
Wigton’s mother taught in St. Cloud and in Steele, N.D. and in 1985, retired to Fargo, where the Clarks would occasionally be seen shopping while visiting Kari’s mother, who died in 2004 in Bismarck, the AP said.
Clark had three children from his first two marriages; he and Wigton had no children together.