“We feel blessed to be on such an incredible journey in life and sometimes the journey begins to lead in different directions. It is with deep love and respect that we announce we are separating as a couple,” Zac and Shelly said in their statement.
The two are parents to five children, one son and four daughters: four-year-old Alexander, seven-year-old Joni, eight-year-old Georgia, ten-year-old Lucy, and 11-year-old Justice.
“We have led a whirlwind life together growing into a beautiful family with five amazing children and while life will be rearranging a bit, our love and commitment to our family will always be there,” Zac and Shelly’s statement read. “This was a difficult decision, but we’ve done plenty of tough things together and this is our next venture — love, mutual respect, and care for each other are what we are moving forward with.”
Wanting to ward off any negativity that may be sent their way, Zac and Shelly asked that people please take the time to focus on their own families, rather than theirs.
“Family comes in all different forms,” they said. “We would like to ask that rather than commenting or spending any energy towards this, that you take this moment to send love to your family, in honor of ours.”
The split surely seemed sudden to fans of the couple, who have been following their love story from day one. Just as recently as last year, Shelly was gushing about her husband during an interview with the Grand Ole Opry.
Filmed as part of the Opry’s “Better Half” series focusing on country artists’ spouses and significant others, Shelly explained how she and Zac first met.
“A friend of his introduced us,” she said. “I was really young – I had just finished college.”
Romance sparked between the two on New Year’s Eve one year.
Zac was stood up by his date and was left with no one to kiss at midnight. He ended up spotting Shelly, the two shared a kiss, and that was the start of their love story.
After watching their romance unfold and their family grow over the years, it is certainly saddening to learn the news of Zac and Shelly’s split.
Our thoughts remain with them and their family during this difficult time.