Oprah Winfrey is embroiled in a family feud after saving her father’s barbershop business from closure.
The billionaire TV titan bought the Nashville, Tennessee barbershop which her dad Vernon Winfrey has run for 50 years in an auction on Friday (29Jun12) after he faced losing the business’ new building to foreclosure.
His wife Barbara, who filed divorce papers against Vernon earlier this week (begs02Jun12), claims she has been locked out of the family company by her step-daughter Oprah, and would have been able to pay off the store’s debts herself.
She tells Fox News, “I know what is going on. I’m tired of it, and I’ve had enough. There is no reason for it to go into foreclosure like this. The property is upside down, which is what a lot of properties are. It cost us $481,000 to build this building, but it’s only worth $350,000.
“People are giving him wrong advice, and it’s leaving me in a situation where all I can do is fight for me. He believes what he’s told. His daughter doesn’t care about the community. His daughter doesn’t care about the barbershop. But I do.”
However, Vernon defended his decision to allow his famous offspring to buy his property, insisting, “My wife and I, we have not been getting along well, and I did not want to endow myself to another drawn-out, struggling debt.”
A representative for the media mogul adds, “Oprah purchased the property that was in foreclosure. Vernon Winfrey has been a fixture in the community for decades and will continue to manage the business on a day-to-day basis.”