Melican said Strother, when they met in 1996, told her his wife had just died -- though it was his long-time mistress who had passed away. His wife, Betty, was still very much alive, and she would later obtain a legal separation from her husband, who moved out of the family home.
Melican, 62, has denied taking advantage of Strother, and said she was just as captivated by him as he was with her.
During a trial, a Cobb County jury upheld one of the three amendments Strother made to his will -- leaving Melican a monthly allowance of $7,900. The jury rejected an amendment that left Melican a Cape Cod property and a Florida boat slip, the latter used by Strother to dock his yacht "Lady Anne." In 2009, the state Supreme Court threw out the verdict that left Melican the $7,900 monthly allowance.
In the other amendment, Strother left Melican the proceeds from the sale of the Florida condo and guaranteed his estate would provide her health insurance. A Cobb judge had ruled Melican could not receive the sale proceeds, but on Tuesday the state Supreme Court overturned that decision.
Allison Barnes Salter, who with her father, former Gov. Roy Barnes, represented the executor of Strother's estate, said she disagreed with the court's decision and might ask it to reconsider.
Melican's lawyer Doug Salyers predicted the court ruling should end the estate's legal battles against Melican. Salyers said he expected the estate "to honor Harvey Strother’s wishes for Anne" and give her the proceeds from the sale.