Claire Marino, wife of Miami Dolphins great Dan Marino, has known about the quarterback’s love child since the girl’s birth in 2005, according to a confidante of Claire’s.
Marino ’fessed up to his wife about his indiscretion and the birth of Chloe, and the couple worked through the difficulties after agreeing to keep it quiet.
“It was sorta something that was known in Dan’s entourage,” said the source, who asked that her name not be used.
“Naturally, Claire wasn’t happy when he told her. But they’ve been together for so long they got through it.
“They were each other’s first. That’s not something you forget. They figured it’d be best to keep the whole thing quiet.”
The scandal broke last week when details surfaced of Marino’s dalliance with Donna Savattere, a production assistant on CBS Sports’ The NFL Today.
Marino co-hosts the weekly program with the likes of James Brown, Shannon Sharpe and Boomer Esiason, with whom he’ll be covering the Super Bowl Sunday.
Meanwhile Claire and Dan, who have four natural and two adopted children together in 28 years of marriage, looked lovey dovey last Saturday when they hosted the annual Autism Walkabout, a fundraiser for autism research at Sun Life Stadium.
They appeared before 25,000 supporters hand in hand. At one point, Dan placed his arm around Claire as they waved to the crowd.
“They were the same they’ve always been,” the source said. “If Dan knew the story was about to be released, he sure hid it well.”
The Marinos are not addressing the scandal beyond a statement put out by Dan about his taking responsibility for his actions.
She’s got his back
A state legislator, meanwhile, stepped right into the Marino affair Friday, telling Gossip Extra: “We all make mistakes!”
Former State Rep. Susan Goldstein, who represented Weston, said she doesn’t think Marino’s work on behalf of autistic children will suffer as a result of the revelations.
“He will not be tainted in the least bit,” said Goldstein. She is also a lobbyist who, at times, represents the Dan Marino Foundation.
She said Marino is expected to appear before the state legislature this spring as he prepares to open a college for autistic children downtown Fort Lauderdale.
“Everybody is grateful to him for what he’s done, the money he has raised,” Goldstein said. “This won’t change his passing records. It won’t change his reputation as a good man.”
DMV steps up
Last week, this column exposed the plight of a motorist whose license was suspended by the Department of Motor Vehicles because he changed his last name to his wife’s after their Miami Beach nuptials.
On Thursday, red-faced agency officials who at first accused him of fraud reinstated his license.
“I didn’t think it was going to be this quick,” said the newlywed, Lazaro Dinh. “Someone actually called from Tallahassee to apologize.”
Said DMV spokeswoman Kirsten Olsen-Doolan: “We’re sorry. It’s so unusual for men to change their names after a wedding that mistakes were made. We are providing additional training to make our employees aware that it is allowed.
“We appreciate The Herald making us aware of this.”
Dinh, meanwhile, said he’s out about $5,000 in attorney’s fees, which the DMV won’t cover.
Sorry, Laz, there’s nothing we can do about that.