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Posted Jun 9, 2011
APT's "Alabama Stories" Features Jett Williams
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Birmingham, AL Ė Alabama Public Televisionís ďAlabama StoriesĒ will feature a one-on-one interview with Jett Williams, country music artist and daughter of music legend Hank Williams, on Tuesday, June 21* at 7 p.m.
ďI had four families before I was four, was orphaned three times, and had six name changes," Williams has said. In this one-hour discussion with APTís Lori Cummings, she documents the battle she fought to prove her paternity and to become a legal heir of her biological fatherís estate.
In 1952, Hank Williams executed a pre-birth custody contract acknowledging his paternity of his yet unborn child and taking custody her. Unfortunately, the child was born five days after Williamsí death in January 1953. In his absence, his mother Lillian adopted her grandchild. When Lillian died just two years later in 1955, the child passed to Hankís sister. Less than one month later, Jett was turned into the state as an unwanted child and placed in the Alabama foster care system, where she was adopted by a family living in Mobile.
While attending the University of Alabama, Jettís adoptive father confided to her that it was possible that she was the daughter of the legendary Hank Williams. In 1980, she began a campaign to verify her paternity and a battle to claim her share of Williamsí estate. That battle ended in 1987 when, having been declared the biological child of Williams, she was awarded half of Williamsí estate.
The Jett Williams court case resulted in changes in numerous laws, including those governing inheritance rights of adopted children.
Today in her late fifties, Jett Williams lives in Tennessee with her husband Keith Adkinson and is enjoying a successful singing career.
*The program will also be aired on APT at 8 p.m. on June 26 and at 10 p.m. on June 28.
About Alabama Public Television
Alabama Public Television, the nationís first statewide educational television network, served as a model for other statewide public broadcasting networks in the U.S. and abroad. Affiliated with the Public Broadcasting System, APT retains its educational mission by serving as a seven-day-a-week educational resource for every child and adult in Alabama through online services, digital television programming on three statewide channels, Emmy Award-winning documentary production and outreach activities.
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