Jimmy Dean Passes [Updated: Arrangements]

Pictured with Elvis Presley at the "Jimmy Dean Show."

Country star and sausage king Jimmy Dean died last night, June 13, at age 81. As a member of the newest class of inductees to the Country Music Hall of Fame, Dean left his mark on the genre, most notably with his trademark song “Big Bad John.” He passed away at his home in Virginia.

Born in Plainview, Texas in 1928, Dean had a string of hits as a country singer in the 1960s, including “Big Bad John” in 1961. Throughout the ‘50s and ‘60s he attracted fans as host of his own television show, and often as a guest host for The Tonight Show. He made his feature film debut in the James Bond classic Diamonds Are Forever.

He went on to found the Jimmy Dean Sausage company in 1968.

He is survived by his wife, Donna Meade Dean.

Visitation:
Sunday, June 20
12:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Nelsen Funeral Home
4650 S. Laburnum Avenue
Richmond, VA 23231
Tel. (804) 222-8601

Funeral:
Monday, June 21
11:00 AM
Grove Avenue Baptist Church
8701 Ridge Road
Richmond, VA 23229

Interment: Private

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Sarah Skates has worked in the music business for more than a decade and is a longtime contributor to MusicRow.

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