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Billy Joel Splits From Third Wife Katie Lee

Billy Joel and his third wife, Katie Lee, have called it quits.

"After nearly five years of marriage, Billy and Katie have decided to separate," their publicists say in a joint statement.

"This decision is the result of much thought and consideration. Billy and Katie remain caring friends, with admiration and respect for each other."

The two exchanged vows in 2004, a year after they first met. It was the first marriage for former 'Top Chef' host Katie Lee and third for the Piano Man.

Katie Lee was 23 at the time of the wedding and Joel was 55. Joel's second wife, Christie Brinkley (photosChristie Brinkley photos), attended the union and gave the couple her blessing.

The news comes months after rumors of Lee having an affair began swirling. The 'New York Daily News' reports that Katie was spotted dirty dancing with 36-year-old Israeli-born fashion designer Yigal Azrouel, who has frequently escorted her to events.

However, the rep insists that Azrouel is just a friend and that the split was "absolutely unrelated to Yigal."

A friend tells the paper "it was really the age difference that caught up with them. They grew apart. She is very career-oriented. She loves going out. She loves the city. When Billy isn't touring, he'd rather be on Long Island with his motorcycles and boats."

Joel is said to have a prenuptial agreement to protect his millions from the latest split.

June 18, 2009 |

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