Gayle King on whom she despises: ‘The woman I caught naked with my now ex’

Gayle King is 61 years old, which is surprising to me because if I just saw her on the street I would put her at late 40s. She looks fabulous, and she’s also lost weight recently doing Weight Watchers with her BFF, Oprah. Prior to today I wasn’t aware of Gayle’s romantic situation and assumed she was married or at least in a long term partnership like Oprah. It turns out that she was married for 11 years, to Connecticut Assistant Attorney General William Bumpus. Her marriage ended way back in 1993 and in a dramatic way. She caught Bumpus in bed with another woman. Apparently she’s talked about this before, but I don’t think she gave this level of detail. Gayle, who is a co-host on CBS this morning, was taking the Vanity Fair questionnaire when she was asked whom she despises. She didn’t mince words when describing how she caught her then-husband cheating. She also called Oprah the person she most admires who is alive today and said that if she could come back after death she’d want to be one of Oprah’s Cocker Spaniels. That’s some loyalty right there:

Which historical figure do you most identify with? Harriet Tubman. I read a lot of autobiographies when I was in elementary school, but hers was the one I never forgot. Now I can’t wait to spend some Tubmans!

Which living person do you most admire?
Oprah Winfrey. She always does the right thing—even when no one is looking.

Which living person do you most despise? “Despise” is a strong word. I’m not a huge fan of the woman I caught naked with my now ex-husband on June 24, 1990, at 9:16 P.M.—but I don’t remember the details.

What do you consider your greatest achievement? Raising two compassionate human beings. . .though waking up at 3:20 every morning is also quite an accomplishment.

If you could choose what to come back as, what would it be? One of Oprah’s cocker spaniels. They give new meaning to the phrase “lucky dog.”

Who are your heroes in real life? Parents who have lost a child to senseless gun violence. I’ve become close to some parents from the Sandy Hook school shooting, and they hold a special place in my heart.

What are your favorite names? Kirby and Will.

How would you like to die? I’d like to die anytime after the age of 90—in my sleep!

[From Vanity Fair]

Gayle comes across very well here, especially in the full article on Vanity Fair’s site. I usually don’t put much stock in these questionnaires but I really liked how she said her greatest achievement was raising her now-adult children, who are named Kirby and Will incidentally. Kirby is her daughter, which is strange to me as I associate the name with vacuum cleaners and video game characters, but that’s her daughter’s given name. From what I can find of Kirby, she’s around 30, works for the Department of Health and Human Services and lives in DC. I couldn’t find much about William Bumpus Jr. except for the fact that he is extremely good looking. (See his photo below.)

Page Six has more about this revelation from Gayle, including the fact that she said in 2006, on her radio show “I was married to a cheater . . . I went to marital counseling. I have been divorced since 1993, so I’m all healed and everything. I have worked it out. I’m not bitter. I’m OK. I’m really OK.” She waited another decade to tell how she busted her ex and her statement is tongue in cheek. “I’m not a huge fan of the woman I caught naked with my now ex-husband on June 24, 1990, at 9:16 P.M.—but I don’t remember the details.” She remembers the details. That’s something you don’t forget, even 26 years later. It’s like she waited until the anniversary of that life-changing event too.


photos credit:, FameFlynet, PRPhotos, Pacific Coast News and Getty

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30 Responses to “Gayle King on whom she despises: ‘The woman I caught naked with my now ex’”

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  1. Pri says:

    I miss Oprah’s show, I really do. I think Ellen panders to A-listers, and while Wendy is entertaining, her views are regressive.

    • HH says:

      Agreed. It has left a void in Daytime talk. Although, I guess it was always going to. No one is as dynamic and commanding as Oprah. She became larger than life.

    • LAK says:

      Oprah’s show started in a bad place similar to Jerry Springer minus the fights and extreme chaviness, and evolved to pandering to celebs, not to mention self-congratulatory.

      She had nowhere to take it by the time she wentboff the air.

  2. Barrett says:

    Her kids are good looking!

  3. aims says:

    I like the tongue and cheek jab. I’ve always liked Gale. On a side note, I have a bestfriend of over 20 years, we’re sisters at this point. However, I have never been as wrapped up in her world as much as Gale is in Oprah’s.

    And yes, Gale’s son is very handsome.

    • HH says:

      Yes, Gayle and Oprah’s friendship is too much for me. I have a best friend of 15 years at this point and she’s also like family to me, but Gayle and Oprah are on another level. I remember on her show, Oprah said she and Gayle talk *at least* once a day. The only person I’ve been able to give that much time to outside of whomever I’m dating, is my mother—and that’s because she pushed me out of her womb, a natural birth at that. She can call me as much as she wants, any time she wants. Everyone else has their limits.

      • Luca76 says:

        I’m like that with one of my friends we are both single, live in the same city, and work in the same field. We touch base at least once a day. Probably because we both get eachothers work/life stress more than anyone else.

      • HH says:

        I think it’s just my personality. I text my bff quite a bit. But I’m not a phone talker. We talk on the phone every week or so. But it’s for hours at a time. She’s a mother, I’m not. So I leave it to her schedule to determine free time.

        Also, truth be told, my life isn’t interesting enough for daily updates. Lol.

  4. HH says:

    These are all really good answers. I like when someone’s sense of humor comes across so easily in writing.

  5. Naya says:

    Is he taken? The son i mean.

  6. Tiffany says:

    I enjoy Gayle, Norah and Charlie in the morning. When they are on, I do not feel like poking pencils in my ears.

  7. Jenns says:

    I always liked Gayle. I remember when she and Oprah went on that road trip and Gayle refused to leave the car until she finished singing along to a Celine Dion song. That cracked me up.

    • Tash says:

      Or was it a Josh Groban song? Anyway, I like both these ladies 🙂

    • JenniferJustice says:

      Was that the one where they went to a civil war reinactment camp or something? Gayle didn’t want to do it, but Oprah did so Gayle went along with it begrudgingly. She said as they walking down the hill toward the encampment dressed in civil war era attire, “just two black girls going to town…” and O had to stop, and bent over laughing. That was hysterical!

  8. Wal says:

    That just sounds ridiculous to me. Why not despise the person who was married to you. He did after all make all those vows.
    That’s why I don’t get this vilification of the other woman or man. Your partner is the one who broke your trust not the other person, regardless of whether they pursued your partner or not.

    • Tash says:

      I agree, but I guess it’s easier to hate someone you didn’t share 10+ years together.

    • JRenee says:

      +100, exactly!

    • Colette says:

      She didn’t say she despised her.She clearly said “I’m not a huge fan…”
      Obviously you are going to dislike a stranger more than a person you loved.Gayle talks about her husband being a cheater so it’s not like she gives him a pass.

    • Original T.C. says:

      Women ALWAYS focus all their attention on the “other woman”. Which I never, ever, ever will understand. It’s as if their men would stay faithful if all other women in the world just died. No, actually then it will be the cow, or horse’s fault for their hubby sticking his you know what in her. LMAO!

      This is why men will continue to cheat, they will ALWAYS have a get out of jail free card from their wives and girlfriends. A guy cheats on me, it’s the guy’s own lack of self control and moral failing. I won’t ever associate with the girl he cheated with but my anger is directed at the person who betrayed our relationship. Thankfully men I dated knew this from the beginning that I would come down with a ton of bricks on THEM so they didn’t play that cheating game with me.

      • kok says:

        @Original T.C.

        perfectly said. a lot of women put other women into 2 categories: threat or non-threat. it’s attitudes ongoing like those that keep us considered not equal, petty, jealous, fighting over men, all the cliches – this behavior supports!…the fact that many women are “sisterhood!” until their man looks at another woman the other wrong way, then they’re “EVIL B/tch!”. It’s messed up. To those women (including Gayle, it seems) who thinks that way….you need to change.

        It’s woman-on-woman sexism/misogyny.

    • HH says:

      There’s naturally going to be some anger at the other person. That being said, I dislike when someone reserves ALL of their anger for the other person. I don’t think Gayle is doing that. As the other poster pointed out, she has spoken about her husband as a cheater. Also, he is the father of her children. It’s a very tricky line to continually speak so ill.

      The idea that you can just let the other person off the hook is so weird to me, especially if you’ve seen that person. I could let an anonymous person off the hook. But if I can put a face to the betrayal, there will be some residual anger for you.

    • Melanie says:

      Maybe she knew the other woman? I could see that playing into the scenario. If I caught my husband in bed with some random, he’s getting all the hate. But if I caught him with someone I know, that would change the story for me, personally. Yes, it’s ultimately the fault of the one your are married to. BUT I do not give the third party a free pass if they know the couple. That person knows full well the other parties are married. They are as unethical as the cheating spouse.

      I’ve posted this years back, but a close friend found out her husband was cheating with his secretary. Not only had the secretary become very close to the family, including their kids, my friend let her stay at the house a few times between moves. To be intimately involved with a family, to have them love you and take you into their home, and then to betray their trust like that is sickening to me. Yes, she hated her husband and he was to blame. But she also hates the secretary and sees her equally to blame in the demise of her marriage. When someone is that close to you, they can use your own words against you and manipulate the situation. Sickos like that get off on manipulation and the power it gives them. I know it sounds like a soap opera, but there really are people like that out there.

      • Jana says:

        The other woman was one of Gayle’s close friends…she told the whole story on her XM radio show a few years ago.

  9. eggy weggs says:

    I think Harriet Tubman was the subject of the first biography I ever read, too! <3 <3 <3

  10. PunkyMomma says:

    I’ve always liked Gayle – I think she grounds Oprah. As to her comment about who she despises, it’s very difficult to get over betrayal, and I agree – it’s interesting she calls out the woman instead of her ex in her comments.

  11. Tourmaline says:

    I associate the name “Kirby” with famed Minnesota Twins baseball player Kirby Puckett…who was a huge hero in the Midwest at least in the 80s and 90s until his woman-assaulting proclivities were revealed and he died at the age of 45.

  12. Tourmaline says:

    Blind Gossip has an item right now that seems to allude to this story and says that Gayle’s ex actually walked in on GAYLE cheating with a “famous woman”.

    • Jwoolman says:

      Sounds bogus. For one thing, it would be so much easier and safer to meet at the other person’s house. No chance for husband or children to walk in on them.