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Former 'Real Housewives' Lisa Wu Hartwell separates from husband

By RODNEY HO/rho@ajc.com, originally filed August 22, 2011

Lisa Wu Hartwell, formerly a cast member of "The Real Housewives of Atlanta," has separated from her husband and former NFL player Ed Hartwell, she Tweeted over the weekend. She deleted the Tweet (@1LisaWu) at about 3:30 p.m. Monday.

Sadly.We r seperated but wld NEVER b over money. That is so far frm the truth. Wish ppl cld respect ppl's privacy during times like these

Her publicist Jonell Whitt, in an email,said Hartwell didn't want to talk about it.

The couple married in 2005 and have a three-year-old son Ed Jr. Wu was previously married to R&B star Keith Sweat and also has two sons with him. (Sweat declined to appear on the show or allow the kids to be on air either.)

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Hartwell's Tweet references financial issues. Hartwell filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection in 2007, and the couple lost their home to foreclosure in 2009.

Hartwell was on "Real Housewives of Atlanta" for the first two seasons in 2008 and 2009 but in 2010, said she quit because the show wanted to delve into storylines she wasn't comfortable with. Plus, she wanted to pursue a serious acting career.

In a case of art imitating life, Hartwell last month had a starring role in a play called "Stripped" at the Ferst Center on the Georgia Tech campus. She played the wife of a former NFL player struggling to adjust to life after fame and fortune fades away. In the play, she is on the verge of divorcing him but at the end, the couple attempts to reconcile.

When I interviewed her last month, she did not talk about her marital issues but then again, I didn't ask. Ed actually shows up in the play but only on video. He played a football player who had died so he's in flashback videos.

Ed played for the Baltimore Ravens and Atlanta Falcons as a linebacker from 2001 to 2006. He also ran a recording studio for a time. He played for the Las Vegas Locomotives in the United Football League last year and as of June, 2011, was still on the roster.

Why did Lisa Wu Hartwell even tweet this? Someone had gone on Ed Hartwell's Facebook page and the public portion at the time said he was separated. (He has since deleted that.) The fan asked StraightFromtheA.com to confirm. The blogger Tweeted Hartwell, who then responded above. Mediatakeout.com claimed to be the first to break the story on Saturday but  StraightFromtheA did. (There's a reason why she calls that other site "Mediafakeout.") StraightFromtheA had seen Hartwell last Thursday at a party and noticed she was not wearing her ring.

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By Rodney Ho, rho@ajc.com, AJCRadioTV blog

About the Author

Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

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