Tim McGraw Reveals How He Learned of His True Paternity
Tim McGraw's father was late Phillies relief pitcher Tug McGraw, who died of brain cancer in 2004. While the two didn't form a strong relationship until Tim was 18, the 'Highway Don't Care' singer revealed to Larry King how he discovered his birth certificate and thus uncovered his true paternity.
McGraw responded to King's question about having an estrangement with his father early in his life, saying, "I didn't know he was my dad. I was 11 years old and was rummaging around in my mom's closet and found a birth certificate . . . my last name was Smith. On my birth certificate, McGraw was scratched out and Smith was written in by hand. He was my stepfather."
When asked if Mr. Smith was a good guy, McGraw was diplomatic, revealing, "He was a good guy at heart, but he had a lot of problems and a lot of issues. He was an alcoholic and very abusive."
To help initiate a relationship with his biological father, McGraw's mother phoned Tug, and Tim saw him once when he was 11 for a brief lunch. They didn't meet up again until Tim was 18, and they developed their incredibly close bond from there. "I saw him give up a grand slam, the first time I saw him pitch," McGraw joked.