Actress Lisa Whelchel spent 24 years married to the same man before getting divorced and taking part in Survivor — coincidentally, in the show's 25th season.
While the viewing public doesn't yet know how long her turn as a contestant will last, we do know the former Facts of Life star was extremely grateful to be one of just 18 castaways.
Breaking the news of her split from Steve Cauble, Lisa Whelchel told People on Thursday, "The divorce was final on March 1, and [I] went out to be on Survivor on March 10."
"Going out to Survivor was helpful for me, to divert my attention and not just dwell on the loss."
The 49-year-old, who met Cauble when he was an associate pastor at The Church On the Way, tied the knot in 1988. During their marriage, the couple went on to have three children who are now all grown.
"I just never thought it would happen to me," continued Lisa Whelchel, who has worked in Christian ministry with Cauble since The Facts of Life ended in 1988. "It was painful to realize that it wasn't going to work out."
Despite their divorce and her newfound time in the spotlight thanks to taking part in Survivor: Phillippines, Lisa Whelchel and Steve Cauble insist their kids come first — in fact, the family watched this past Wednesday's premiere all together!
"We will always be friends," Lisa Whechel added. "And we will always be family, too."
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