Kenny Rogers Has Passed Away at 81
Kenny Rogers passed away in the late evening March 20. He was 81.
The music icon's family announced his passing early Saturday (March 21) morning on social media and via a public statement on the legend's web site. The statement revealed that Rogers died "peacefully" while at home under the care of hospice, surrounded by family members.
Born Aug. 21, 1938, the multi-Grammy winner and Country Music Hall of Fame member is perhaps best remembered for his iconic country cross-over hit, 1978's "The Gambler," for which he won the Best Male Country Vocal Performance Grammy award in 1980.
He is also remembered for his collaborations with fellow music legends Lionel Richie, Sheena Easton, the Bee Gees and Dolly Parton, as well as for his acting and many entrepreneurial endeavors.
Roger's last concert, part of his The Gambler's Last Deal Farewell Tour, took place in Nashville on October 25, 2017. The tour was originally meant to span 2018, but Rogers and his team cut the run short at the advisement of doctors, due to "health challenges" Rogers was experiencing at the time.
Rogers is survived by his five children — Christopher Cody Rogers, Jordan Edward Rogers, Justin Charles Rogers, Kenny Rogers Jr. and Carole Rogers — as well as his wife, Wanda Miller Rogers, whom he wed in 1997.
Read the Rogers family's full statement below:
The Rogers family is sad to announce that Kenny Rogers passed away last night at 10:25PM at the age of 81. Rogers passed away peacefully at home from natural causes under the care of hospice and surrounded by his family.
In a career that spanned more than six decades, Kenny Rogers left an indelible mark on the history of American music. His songs have endeared music lovers and touched the lives of millions around the world. Chart-topping hits like "The Gambler," "Lady," "Islands In The Stream," "Lucille," "She Believes In Me," and "Through the Years" are just a handful of Kenny Rogers' songs that have inspired generations of artists and fans alike. Rogers, with twenty-four number-one hits, was a Country Music Hall of Fame member, six-time CMA Awards winner, three-time GRAMMY Award winner, recipient of the CMA Willie Nelson Lifetime Achievement Award in 2013, CMT Artist of a Lifetime Award honoree in 2015 and has been voted the "Favorite Singer of All Time" in a joint poll by readers of both USA Today and People.
The family is planning a small private service at this time out of concern for the national COVID-19 emergency. They look forward to celebrating Kenny’s life publicly with his friends and fans at a later date.