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Neil Young files for divorce from Pegi Young after 36-year marriage

Neil Young, who's been married to Pegi Young since 1977, has filed for divorce

Rock legend Neil Young has filed for divorce from Pegi Young, his wife of nearly 37 years.

The "Southern Man" and "Heart of Gold" singer-songwriter, 68, put in the papers July 29 in San Mateo County, with Pegi Young, 61, filing her response Aug. 12. They have requested alternative dispute mediation, and a court date to check in on that process has been scheduled for December.

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FOR THE RECORD

An earlier version of this story said the Youngs were married in 1977. They got married in 1978.

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Pegi met Neil when she was working as a waitress near his Northern California ranch, according to Rolling Stone, and was the inspiration for his most popular love songs. They married in August 1978.

In addition to collaborating musically -- she started singing backup with him in the '90s and is a singer-songwriter in her own right -- the couple helped create the Bridge School together in 1986 after they found no school that met their kids' special needs.

They have two adult children together, Ben and Amber Jean, an artist. Neil Young has a son, Zeke, from a previous relationship with the late actress Carrie Snodgress.

Neil Young and Snodgress split in 1975, and in 1983, the Oscar-nominated actress sued her former beau over support for Zeke, then 11, who has mild cerebral palsy. The rocker agreed to pay $10,000 a month and spend up to $300,000 on a house for the two, People reported at the time. Snodgress died in 2004.

While both sons have cerebral palsy, Ben's is far more severe: He's a quadriplegic and cannot speak.

Ben does, however, go out on "every tour," his dad said in 2012.

"He’s our spiritual leader in that way," Neil Young told the New York Times Magazine. "We take him everywhere, and he’s like a measuring stick for what’s going on."

Since 1986, the Youngs have organized an annual benefit concert for the Bridge School.

Follow Christie D'Zurilla on Twitter @theCDZ and Google+. Follow the Ministry of Gossip on Twitter @LATcelebs.

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