Maria Dolores Rivero-Torres is best known as the former wife of actor Joe Don Baker. The couple married on December 25, 1969, and their marriage lasted for almost 10 years before they divorced in 1980. Maria has remained out of the public eye since, and very little is known about her private life. It is unclear whether the two had any children together during their marriage.
Her ex-husband, Joe Don Baker
Joe Don Baker was born on February 12, 1936, in Groesbeck, Texas. He attended the University of North Texas and graduated with a business degree in 1958. After graduation, he found success in both television and film, appearing in the 1967 film Cool Hand Luke and on television shows such as The Big Valley and Mod Squad. He was the title character in the 1971 TV movie Mongo’s Back in Town, starring Telly Savalas. In Westerns, his physical prowess and stereotypical Texas drawl were perfect for roles in both television and film, appearing in Guns of the Magnificent Seven (1969), Wild Rovers (1971) and Junior Bonner (1972).
His career began with the 1968 pilot episode of Lancer, titled “The High Riders”, in which he played the main villain, Day Pardee. He achieved breakthrough success with the 1973 film Walking Tall, directed by Phil Karlson. In 1977 he had a leading role in Checkered Flag or Crash opposite Susan Sarandon and The Shadow of Chikara with Ted Neeley and Sondra Locke. He went on to portray the Whammer, a baseball player modeled on Babe Ruth, in the 1984 drama The Natural, starring Robert Redford. In 1985, he played the corrupt Chief Jerry Karlin in Fletch, for which he was nominated for Best Actor at the British Academy Television Awards. Other notable roles include his performance in Martin Scorsese’s 1991 remake of Cape Fear, where he played a private detective hired by protagonist Sam Bowden (Nick Nolte) to protect his family from a psychopathic ex-convict (Robert De Niro). More recently, he has appeared in Joe Dirt, The Dukes of Hazzard, and Strange Wilderness, as well as The Cleaner on A&E, playing an alcoholic military veteran attempting to help a friend cope with the loss of his son. He most recently appeared in the 2012 film Mud, playing the role of King.
Joe Don Baker has appeared in multiple James Bond films from the 1980s to the 1990s. He first appeared as the villainous arms dealer Brad Whitaker in the 1987 film The Living Daylights, starring Timothy Dalton as 007. He then returned to the series in 1995 and 1997, this time playing the CIA agent Jack Wade in GoldenEye and Tomorrow Never Dies, with Pierce Brosnan as Bond. Baker is one of four actors who have portrayed both a Bond ally and a villain, along with Charles Gray, Walter Gotell, and Richard Kiel, making him a unique figure in the Bond franchise.
His other film credits include Adam at 6 A.M. (1970), Charley Varrick (1973), The Outfit (1974), Framed (1975), Mitchell (1975), The Pack (1977), Speedtrap (1977), Wishbone Cutter (1978), Joysticks (1982), Wacko (1982), Final Justice (1985), Getting Even (1986), Leonard Part 6 (1987), The Killing Time (1987), Criminal Law (1988), The Children (1990), The Distinguished Gentleman (1992), Ring of Steel (1994), Reality Bites (1994), The Underneath (1995), Panther (1995), Congo (1995), The Grass Harp (1995), Felony (1995), and Mars Attacks! (1996).