Little House on the Prairie meets thirtysomething . . . for love! Melissa Gilbert is engaged to actor Timothy Busfield, a rep for Gilbert, 48, tells Us Weekly exclusively. It will be the third marriage for both. A mother of two, Dancing with the Stars alum Gilbert's previous husbands are Bo Brinkman (they divorced in 1992) and Bruce Boxleitner (their split was finalized in 2011). A father of three, West Wing star Busfield, 55, has been married to Radha Delmarter and Jenny Meriwin.
"They got engaged over the holidays," a source tells Us of the surprise couple. What brought the TV veterans together in the first place? "They've known each other for quite some time, as their paths have crossed off-and-on over the past 20 years."
The spouses-to-be celebrated their engagement on the evening of Monday Jan. 28 at Beverly Hills eatery Mr. Chow. Gilbert, who became a child star as Laura Ingalls on Little House on the Prairie in the 70s and 80s, admitted last year — during her stint on DWTS — that her split from second husband Boxleitner after 16 years together was a challenge.
"It's been hard on the kids and that's been hard to watch but ultimately everyone's going to be fine," Gilbert, who dated Rob Lowe as a young adult, said in April 2012. "Everything takes time." Gilbert's other famous ex? Rob Lowe, whom she dated on and off during her late teens and early 20s.