Dana York is a former educator who became famous after marrying the late American legendary rocker, Tom Petty. She again came at the forefront of public’s attention after her husband Tom Petty died from accidental overdose of prescription medication. Dana stood by her spouse’s side while he was battling substance abuse and ultimately passed away due to multiple drug toxicity. She had earlier successfully helped Petty stay away from drugs, as she had learned a lot from her father’s substance abuse problems during her early life. Apart from supporting the singer-songwriter in his fight against drugs, Dana also ensured that his relationship with his family, especially two daughters from his previous marriage, remained strong. After his death, however, things changed dramatically in the family, as Dana and Petty’s daughters, Adria Petty and Annakim Violette, are at loggerheads over the control of his estate.
Not much is known about Dana York’s career as she remained a private person up until the death of her famous second husband. The only information that is available online is that she worked in the field of education before marrying Tom Patty. She reportedly served as the principal at the University High School in Ferndale in Michigan. After marrying Petty, she resigned from her job in order to manage her husband and his band’s schedule.
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Family & Personal Life
Dana York was born in Flint, Michigan in 1964. She moved with her family to Flushing, Michigan when she was a child and studied at Flushing High School, graduating from there in 1982. Her mother lives in Fenton, Michigan. Dana has a son called Dylan from her first marriage.
Dana met Tom Petty at a concert in Texas in 1991, but they did not get together for another five years. In fact, both of them were married to their respective spouses when they first met. In 1996, both of them were going through divorce proceedings when they met again. They dated for six years before getting married on June 3, 2001 in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. According to ‘People’ magazine, Dana and Petty had two wedding ceremonies. Their Las Vegas wedding was a small and intimate affair, attended by their family members and close friends, while the second ceremony was held in their house in Malibu, and legendary musician Little Richard officiated it.
Dana was married to Tom for 16 years until his untimely death from accidental overdose of prescription drugs on October 2, 2017. In the 1990s, he suffered from multi drug addiction and when Dana came to know about it, she greatly helped him overcome it. In fact, the superstar rocker publicly acknowledged his wife’s support in his battle against drugs. She not only helped him survive serious drug abuse, but also ensured to strengthen his bonds with his two daughters from previous marriage. She remained with him for one and a half decade until he collapsed from drug overdose in 2017. She tried to revive him by performing CPR but failed. A year after his death, she collaborated with his daughter, bandmates and producer to release his greatest hits in order to keep his legacy alive.
Controversies & Scandals
In April 2019, Dana York came at the center of a controversy when it was revealed that she had filed a lawsuit against Tom Petty’s two daughters from his previous marriage. In her litigation, she claimed that Adria Petty and Annakim Violette were preventing her from managing the late singer’s estate. She further said that the sisters’ actions were delaying the release of Petty’s posthumous album ‘Greatest Hits’ as well as a 25th anniversary reissue of Petty's 1994 solo LP ‘Wildflowers’. Petty’s daughter Adria has also filed a lawsuit against Dana, claiming that their father’s widow is trying to throw her and her sister Annakim out of the trust’s decision-making process, thus dishonoring Petty’s will.