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Photos and video: Country stars pay respects at George Jones' funeral today

by Brandy McDonnell Published: May 2, 2013

George Jones has left the Grand Ole Opry for the last time.

The country music legend was emotionally remembered at his funeral this morning at The Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville, Tenn. As previously reported, the funeral was open to the public, and thousands of fans lined up early to gain admittance.

In addition, national television networks CMT, GAC, RFD, and FamilyNet, as well as local Nashville stations WKRN 2, WSMV 4, WTVF 5, WZTV 17 aired the funeral service live.

Former First Lady Laura Bush, Kenny Chesney, Grand Ole Opry VP&GM Pete Fisher, Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Barbara Mandrell, and CBS News’ Chief Washington Correspondent Bob Schieffer all made special remarks.

Naturally, the service included music, with performers including Charlie Daniels, Ronnie Milsap, Kid Rock, The Oak Ridge Boys, Brad Paisley, Randy Travis, Travis Tritt, Tanya Tucker and Wynonna. Alan Jackson closed the service performing Jones’ seminal hit “He Stopped Loving Her Today.” (I couldn’t find a YouTube video of his performance today, so I posted one of Jackson singing the ballad in Georgia last Friday upon hearing of the Country Music Hall of Famer’s death.)

I am admittedly biased, but my favorite musical moment came when Oklahoma native Vince Gill and Patty Loveless performed “Go Rest High on That Mountain,” as featured in the YouTube video posted above. Before they sang, Gill memorialized The Possum with fond memories and good humor – “For some reason, George thought I liked ravioli, and cases and cases of the worst ravioli you ever had in your life would end up on my bus. I’ve still got some of it,” he shared – but when they began to sing, Gill was fighting back tears. Loveless put a hand on his shoulder, and Gill poured his heart into an extended acoustic guitar solo.

Fans not able to attend the funeral can leave a special message about George Jones at http://tinyurl.com/GJtribute.

RIP.

Vince Gill cries as he performs with Patty Loveless during the funeral for country music star George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Vince Gill cries as he performs with Patty Loveless during the funeral for country music star George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Wynonna Judd performs during the funeral for country music star George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Wynonna Judd performs during the funeral for country music star George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Alan Jackson sings "He Stopped Loving Her Today" to close the funeral for country music star George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Alan Jackson sings "He Stopped Loving Her Today" to close the funeral for country music star George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Barbara Mandrell speaks during the funeral for country music star George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Barbara Mandrell speaks during the funeral for country music star George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Charlie Daniels performs during the funeral for country music star George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Charlie Daniels performs during the funeral for country music star George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)

Attendees stand as the casket of country music star George Jones is taken out of the Grand Ole Opry House following his funeral on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Attendees stand as the casket of country music star George Jones is taken out of the Grand Ole Opry House following his funeral on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Jeff Long, of Carton Ga., pink shirt, waits with the crowd to enter the Grand Ole Opry House for the funeral of country music star George Jones on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, a country music legend who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Jeff Long, of Carton Ga., pink shirt, waits with the crowd to enter the Grand Ole Opry House for the funeral of country music star George Jones on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, a country music legend who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Kid Rock speaks during the funeral for country music star George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Kid Rock speaks during the funeral for country music star George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Former first lady Laura Bush hugs Nancy Jones, left, the widow of country music star George Jones during the funeral for George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
Former first lady Laura Bush hugs Nancy Jones, left, the widow of country music star George Jones during the funeral for George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
The Oak Ridge Boys perform during the funeral for country music star George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)
The Oak Ridge Boys perform during the funeral for country music star George Jones in the Grand Ole Opry House on Thursday, May 2, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. Jones, one of country music's biggest stars who had No. 1 hits in four separate decades, died April 26. (AP)

-BAM

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by Brandy McDonnell
Entertainment Reporter
Brandy McDonnell, also known by her initials BAM, writes stories and reviews on movies, music, the arts and other aspects of entertainment. She is NewsOK’s top blogger: Her 4-year-old entertainment news blog, BAM’s Blog, has notched more than 1...
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