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Dolly Parton Denies Lesbian Rumor and Romantic Relationship With Best Friend Judy Ogle

November 27, 2012 (6:01 am) GMT
The 'Islands in the Stream' country singer says of Judy, 'I love her as much as I love anybody in the whole world, but we're not romantically involved.'

denied that she is a lesbian when she was recently interviewed on "Nightline". Clarifying the rumor that she has a romantic relationship with best pal Judy Ogle, she explained, "Judy and I have been best friends since we were like in the third and fourth grade."

"We still just have a great friendship and relationship and I love her as much as I love anybody in the whole world, but we're not romantically involved," Dolly stated. She then compared her relationship with Judy to 's relationship with Gayle King, saying, "Like Gayle. Her friend, Judy, my friend, they just think that you can't be that close to somebody."

The singer, who first popularized "I Will Always Love You", has been rumored to be a lesbian for years. The rumor was sparked by one of her statements in 2007. Back then, she said, "When I have sex with my husband these days, I fantasize I am with someone like or a petite, hot young woman."

Despite the gay rumor, she has actually been married to Carl Dean for 46 years. She is also supportive toward gay community. In the interview with "Nightline", she revealed that Ku Klux Klan launched threats toward her after she showed her support to LGBT rights and decided to host "Gay Day" at Dollywood, her theme park in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.

The "Coat of Many Colors" singer said, "When it first started there were people giving us threats, I still get threats." She went on, "But like I said, I'm in business. I just don't feel like I have to explain myself. I love everybody."

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