‘Little House on the Prairie’: Cindy Landon Sued After a Tabloid Reported Michael Landon Was Involved With ‘Illegal Drugs and Pornography’

Michael Landon was a staple on Little House on the Prairie, and the show wouldn’t be what it is today without him. He was known for his role as Charles Ingalls, and he also helped write, produce, and direct the episodes. Unfortunately, he died when he was just 54 from cancer in 1991, and he was survived by his wife, Cindy Landon, and his nine children.

Cindy once sued a tabloid after they allegedly reported Michael was involved with some illegal and unsavory activities when he was alive. Here’s what happened.

Michael Landon from ‘Little House on the Prairie’ caused a stir with Cindy Landon

Michael Landon from 'Little House on the Prairie' and wife Cindy Landon
Michael Landon from ‘Little House on the Prairie’ and wife Cindy Landon | Ron Galella, Ltd/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

RELATED: ‘Little House on the Prairie’: Michael Landon Lost Millions of Dollars After His Divorce From Lynn Noe

Michael and Cindy certainly loved each other, but their love story caused a lot of chaos when they first got together. When the two met, Michael was married to Lynn Noe — and their relationship lasted for nearly 20 years. Unfortunately, it seems they were having a lot of issues in their marriage.

“Lynn and I fought a lot, about jealousy, about my being tied up with my work,” Landon said, according to INSP. “I’d go into depressed moods, and then I’d go around screaming at people at home and in the studio. … Nobody’s perfect. Not Charles Ingalls. Not Michael Landon.”

Michael then chose to pursue a relationship with the Little House on the Prairie makeup artist, Cindy Clerico (now Landon). Noe and Michael didn’t seem to have any hard feelings toward each other at the end of their marriage. And Michael and Cindy tied the knot in 1983.

Cindy sued a tabloid after they made false claims about Michael

'Little House on the Trailer' star Michael Landon and wife Cindy Landon
‘Little House on the Prairie’ star Michael Landon and wife Cindy Landon | Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

Michael and Cindy were together until Michael’s death in 1991. And the two clearly loved each other a lot. While Michael remained in good spirits throughout his cancer diagnosis, the prognosis wasn’t good. And he died very loved by the community and his huge family.

More trouble was ahead for Cindy after Michael’s death, though. According to People, Cindy sued The Globe tabloid for what they published in the late ’90s. The tabloid allegedly said Cindy and Michael were having difficulties in their relationship prior to Michael’s death. They also stated Michael was involved with “such things as illegal drugs and pornography.”

“I am outraged that the press feels that it can make any statements it wants about a person, no matter how damaging and no matter how false, when that person is dead and unable to defend himself,” Cindy said at the time.

Cindy was the only one with Michael when he died

Michael Landon, wife Cindy Landon, son Sean Landon, and daughter Jennifer Landon
Michael Landon, wife Cindy Landon, son Sean Landon, and daughter Jennifer Landon | Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

It’s clear Cindy didn’t think it was fair for a tabloid to ruin Michael’s good image. And it was assuredly difficult for her when he died. People notes Cindy was alone with Michael when he died on July 1, 1991. And his final words to her were, “I love you.”

While Cindy felt prepared for Michael to die, there are moments when the grief would really hit her. “I’ve been coming home for months now and seeing his car in the garage, and I want to say, ‘Oh, Mike’s home.’ He died? Not Michael,” she said.

As for how she moved forward, shed noted therapy for herself and the kids was extremely helpful. And Michael left her “beautiful letters” in a book. “I read those quite often,” she added. “They’re about how to remain strong and solid.”

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