Country legend Charley Pride died on Saturday in Dallas, Texas, at the age of 86 due to complications from COVID-19, a statement on his website confirmed. Pride, who was considered a pioneer for Black musicians in country music, became the first Black member of the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2000. He was knows for top hits including “Kiss an Angel Good Morning” and “Is Anybody Goin’ to San Antone.”
In addition to earning three Grammy Awards during his career, Pride took home the entertainer of the year award at the 1971 Country Music Awards and won male vocalist of the year both that year and in 1972. His final performance was just last month when he was given the Lifetime Achievement Award at the CMAs, which drew controversy for being held indoors despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
Following the news of his death, fellow country stars paid tribute to Pride, including Dolly Parton, who wrote on Twitter: “I’m so heartbroken that one of my dearest and oldest friends, Charley Pride, has passed away. It’s even worse to know that he passed away from COVID-19. What a horrible, horrible virus. Charley, we will always love you. Rest In Peace. My love and thoughts go out to his family and all of his fans.”
Pride is survived by his wife, Rozene. They had three children, five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
Editorial credit: Featureflash Photo Agency / Shutterstock.com