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George Jones

DEAD at 81

4/26/2013 11:30 AM PDT UPDATED: 4/26/2013 8:51 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
breaking news

8:51 AM PT --
Country superstar Alan Jackson -- who's known George for years -- tells TMZ ... “Well, heaven better get ready for some great country music."

He adds, "While George was known for his wild and crazy days, I’ve known him for 25 years as a friend. He had grown into a real good man. Of course, he will always be the greatest singer and interpreter of real country music – there’ll never be another."

"Like the song says, ‘You know this old world is full of singers, but just a few are chosen to tear your heart out when they sing. Imagine life without them…Who’s gonna fill their shoes.’”

8:04 AM PT --
George's publicist has released a statement on the singer's passing ... saying, "Today is a sad day for music. George said to me once, 'One day I'll Join the Angel band.' Well, today he did."

The statement continues, "George passed with his family by his side and the official cause of death is being listed as  'Hypoxic Respiratory Failure.'"

FYI -- H.R.F. means the lungs couldn't pump enough oxygen to the rest of the body.

7:44 AM PT --
A family member tells TMZ ... "He has been on oxygen for a long while now and his lungs finally just couldn’t do it anymore and they collapsed and he passed away. He couldn’t breathe anymore on his own."

George Jones
... the country music megastar whose heartfelt vocals and close-to-home lyrics defined the genre for generations ... died today.  He was 81.

Jones was hospitalized in Nashville on April 18 for a fever and irregular blood pressure, though the cause of death was not immediately released.

Jones was in the middle of a tour -- which he announced would be his last -- when he fell ill. Several dates had already been canceled.

Jones' towering influence on country music was equaled only by his public persona ... which often imitated the melodrama in his songs ... and was well-chronicled in the tabloids. He was married four times -- once to Tammy Wynette -- and made countless headlines for drinking, stormy romances and violent rages.

But his star-power in country music cannot be overstated. Jones has charted more country hits than any other artist ... "He Stopped Loving Her Today" is perhaps his biggest, but the list of charted hits is around 150.

He was a Grand Ole Opry member, a Kennedy Center Honoree, and was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1992 ... though given how much influence he had on country music ... they might as well have honored him every year.

Jones' first number one hit was "White Lightning" in 1959.

Jones nearly died in a car wreck in 1999, but recovered and kept his career vibrant right up until his death.

He is survived by four children and his fourth wife of 30 years, Nancy.



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He stopped loving her today.

455 days ago

Marine Brat    

Another Marine is standing guard at Heavens Gates. RIP "No Show" Jones.

455 days ago


Rip. Condolences to his family.

455 days ago


Prayers to his family.. he sure was a class act.. May you R.I.P. George..

455 days ago


RIP George Jones! You made some of my favorite music! I am saddened as I am listening to your music right now. Prayers for the family. Nobody will ever take George's place.

455 days ago


RIP Possum! Your music will be missed. Sad to see ya go...thanks for the memories!

455 days ago


I grew up listening to of my favs..thanks for the songs George.. RIP buddy.

455 days ago

nobody important    

There will never be another George Jones. One of the greatest country music singers of all times!!! This is so sad and condolences to his family. Fun Fact: My grandfather used to go on trail rides with GJ and even lived next door when my mom was little. Even way back then he'd ride a lawn mower down the street and be drunker than cooter

455 days ago


This is so sad!!!! Ever since I was a little girl the only person I ever wanted to see in concert was George Jones and when he came to Newfoundland I got tickets for my b-day and it was the best birthday gift I have ever recieved!

455 days ago


Separate the artist from a man with problems! As an artist he was the best. I loved White Lightening and every song after that. Hard to believe with all the negatives about his personal life he was married to his last wife over 30 years! RIP

455 days ago


George was in the late-middle to early-late stage of Alzheimer's. I can not believe you guys didn't mention this. It is well do***ented. He was barley able to function on stage last time I saw him on TV. He very well may have gone down and deteriorated rapidly as many people going into later stage Alzheimers do. He was one hell of a guitar player. A lot of younger people don't realize that. But he was one of the top guitarist in all of music. But he sure did abuse his body and lived a troubled life. Rest in peace, George. You are finally at peace now.

455 days ago


RIP George..thanks for the songs.

455 days ago


You will be greatly missed.

455 days ago

Cheryl A.    

I feel terrible. George Jones was one of the BEST country singers and He stopped Loving Her Today is possibly the BEST country song out there. Rest in Peace, Mr. George.

455 days ago

bob walker    

rip george give tammy a hug for me

455 days ago
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