PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (WVLT) – A familiar performer at Dollywood has passed away overnight due to cancer, according to family members.
Randy Parton, brother to Dolly Parton, most recently performed in the My People, My Music show at Dollywood. He was 67 years old.
Dolly Parton released the following statement:
“My brother Randy has lost his battle with cancer. The family and I are grieving his loss but we know he is in a better place than we are at this time. We are a family of faith and we believe that he is safe with God and that he is joined by members of the family that have gone on before and have welcomed him with joy and open arms.
Randy was a great singer, writer, and entertainer. He sang, played guitar and bass in my band for many years. He headed his own show at Dollywood since it opened in 1986. He’s had several chart records of his own, but his duet with me on “Old Flames Can’t Hold A Candle To You” will always be a highlight in my own career.
“You Are My Christmas,” our duet on my latest Christmas album, joined with his daughter Heidi, will always be a favorite. It was his last musical recording and he shined on it just like he’s shining in heaven now.
He is survived by his wife Deb, his daughter Heidi, son Sabyn, grandsons Huston and Trent.
We will always love him and he will always be in our hearts.”
According to the Dollywood website, “My People, My Music features her brother Randy along with several other family members who share songs of the family’s strong faith, their deep love for the Smoky Mountains and their steadfast belief in their sister Dolly.”
Parton was featured on Dolly’s most recent holiday album, A Holly Dolly Christmas, in the heartwarming song, “You Are My Christmas.”
Stella Parton took to Twitter to express her gratitude for the thoughts and prayers pouring in after the loss of her brother.
Representatives with Dollywood expressed their sympathy, as well.
“Randy was a creative force and a good friend,” Paige Bales, Director of Dollywood Entertainment said. “He has left a lasting legacy at Dollywood with his talent, his creativity and his leadership. We will all miss him but heaven has gained another star.”
Parton had several hit songs in his career, including “Roll On (18 Wheeler),” which was later number one for Alabama.
The family asks that, in lieu of flowers, donations in honor of Randy and their late father Lee be made to the Imagination Library.
To donate, go here.
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