Splits, Cheating & Surgery! Christie Brinkley's Biggest Secrets & Scandals Exposed

Left, Christie Brinkley and Billy Joel at the Sony Party Lincoln Center New York City. Center, Christie Brinkley Bella Issue Cover Launch Party. Right, CHRISTIE BRINKLEY, HUSBAND PETER COOK AND DAUGHTER ALEXA
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Sep. 23 2019, Updated 6:22 p.m. ET

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Christie Brinkley shot to fame with her girl-next-door looks and sparkling smile, but behind the scenes, the former supermodel's life hasn't always been so pretty.

From cheating scandals and a nasty divorce to plastic surgery rumors, Brinkley, 65, has weathered her fair share of ups and downs through the years.

Most recently, Brinkley was reduced to tears after talk show host Wendy Williams threw shade at the covergirl for her decision to suddenly bow out of competing on Dancing with the Stars after she suffered an injury during rehearsals that required surgery to her wrist and arm.

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"Let me tell you what I see. I don't see a wrist and a shoulder being fractured. But that was real cute," Williams blasted, insisting her friend, Brinkley, was making the story up so her daughter, Sailor Brinkley-Cook, could be her convenient replacement.

"Here's my thought: Dancing With the Stars called Christie Brinkley … and she said yes. After she got off the phone, that's when she plotted her schedule. … In my opinion, I think what Christie did was she signed up for Dancing With the Stars knowing that she'd put her daughter Sailor in there."

After the dig, Brinkley said she was "totally shocked" at her friend Williams' allegations.

"I have been there for Wendy Williams. That is so weird," she cried. "I have to give her a call … I'm really stunned."

Scroll through's gallery to find out more of Brinkley's most upsetting secrets and scandals!

Fighting Words

Wendy Williams Circle of Sisters Expo
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Brinkley fought back against Williams' unkind words. "My message to Wendy is, it's so much more fun to be kind," she said. "Try it. It can't feel good to try to hurt other people. If it feels good, something's seriously wrong."

Surgery Regrets

Christie Brinkley Elie Tahari 45th Anniversary show
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Brinkley once admitted she's tweaked her famous face with cosmetic surgery after worrying forehead wrinkles were marring her looks. "I don't even know why I bothered," she has said, noting she does, however, rely on Botox to smooth out "particularly obvious" stringy bands in her neck.

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Marriage Meltdown

Christie Brinkley 1979
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Brinkley, who has walked down the aisle four times, is famously unlucky in love. She married her first husband, French artist Jean-Francois Allaux in 1973, when she was still a teenager. The marriage imploded in 1981 amid the model's increasing fame.

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Scary Accident

Christie Brinkley at the 1984 Academy Awards
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One year later, Brinkley fell in love with Moet-Chandon Champagne heir Olivier Chandon de Brailles. Tragically, he died in a race car crash.

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Another Failure

Christie Brinkley and Billy Joel at the Sony Party Lincoln Center New York City.
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She wed singer Billy Joel in 1985, and they had a daughter, Alexa Ray Joel, now 33. The marriage ended in 1994 amid rumors he was unfaithful.

Christie Brinkley
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Shocking Crash

Christie Brinkley Photo Call at Sardi's
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Shockingly, Brinkley survived a helicopter crash when an aircraft she was riding near Telluride, Colorado, during a heli-skiing trip in 1994. "I know for a fact that tomorrow is not a guarantee and that each day is a gift and an opportunity to make sure that everybody we love knows it!" she has said.

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Crash Couple

Christie Brinkley participates in the BUILD Speaker Series to discuss the "Milestones of Me" campaign at AOL Studios
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Brinkley then rushed down the aisle with fellow accident survivor and real estate developer Richard Taubman just nine months later at the crash site. They had a son, Jack, now 24, but the marriage ended in 1995.

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Betrayed Again

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In 1996, the supermodel met architect Peter Halsey Cook. They married in 1996 and had their daughter Sailor, now 21. The union infamously blew up and they divorced in 2008 after he admitted to cheating three years earlier with his then-18-year-old assistant Diana Bianchi. The two reportedly made a sex tape together, sending Brinkley reeling. "My world was completely shattered," she said.

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Emergency Surgery

Source: Charles Sykes/Shutterstock

The catwalker was almost left paralyzed in 2006 after she suffered a devastating skiing accident and nearly severed her spine. "I could have lost my leg," she has said. "The doctor told me unless I did surgery immediately I would only have a 30 percent chance of the leg recovering."

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Family Tragedy

Christie Brinkley and Alexa Ray Joel Exclusive
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In 2009, Brinkley's daughter Alexa said she "hit rock bottom" and took too many pills to calm down from panic attacks. "I did say, 'I want to die' on the 911 call," she has recalled. "Did I really want to? Absolutely not! I was being dramatic, and I take responsibility and apologize to everybody involved."

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Silver Lining

Christie Brinkley Bella Issue Cover Launch Party
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Despite her life's ups and downs, Brinkley always has tried to see the silver lining. "No matter how horrible anything can be, and it got really dark there for a while, count your blessings," she has said.



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