Gary Coleman, the 40-year-old former child actor, married 22-year-old redhead Shannon Price at a private mountaintop ceremony in Nevada in August of 2007.
The primary reason why the marriage was kept under wraps for six months was because Price, who is an aspiring actress, wanted to forge her own identity. "I just want my own identity as well because I don't want to be known as Gary Coleman's wife," said Price.
Coleman and Price met in 2006 on the set of the movie, "Church Ball." It was Price who proposed to Coleman, but Coleman decided to give Price a surprise birthday present by arranging the secret wedding ceremony, which took place on a mountaintop in the Valley of Fire State Park in Nevada. "Nobody was around but the minister, preacher, the videographers, the photographer, the helicopter pilot and us," Coleman told "Inside Edition."
Gary Coleman, who rose to fame playing the ridiculously precocious Arnold Jackson on the '70s hit sitcom "Diff'rent Strokes," notes that this is not only his first marriage, but also the first time he has been intimate with a woman. "In the middle of the night I'm wondering: 'Gee, what made me get married to this woman?' I never got the opportunity to be romantic or feel romantic with anyone. I wasn't saving myself, she just happened to be the one," he said.
As for the gap in age and height (Coleman is 4 foot 8; Price is about 5 foot 7), Price, who currently sells Gary Coleman memorabilia on eBay, said, "That doesn't really matter to me. He was 10 feet tall to me because he was sweet and I really liked his personality." Coleman had this to say about the discrepancies: "I don't have issues with age, I have issues with intelligence. She's more intelligent than I am, and that's what matters to me."