Dolly Parton shared a sad update with fans on Thursday morning, announcing that her younger brother, Randy Parton, has died. He was 67 years old.
“My brother Randy has lost his battle with cancer,” the singer wrote. “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 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 one of Dolly’s 11 siblings, and he shared her passion for country music. He was an avid singer-songwriter who charted two singles in country radio’s top 30 in 1981, and in 1982 he became the first artist to record “Roll On (Eighteen Wheeler),” which was subsequently a hit for Alabama. Randy also often collaborated with his legendary musical sister, playing in her band for several years and duetting with her on her 1980 hit, “Old Flames Can’t Hold a Candle to You.”
Most recently, Randy joined Dolly on her 2020 Christmas album, A Holly Dolly Christmas. They sang “You Are My Christmas,” a song Dolly wrote that was inspired by memories of their childhood together.
“‘You Are My Christmas,’ our duet on my latest Christmas album, joined with his daughter Heidi, will always be a favorite,” Dolly reflected in her statement announcing Randy’s death. “It was his last musical recording and he shined on it just like he’s shining in heaven now.”
By Carena Liptak
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