The country music community is slowly coming to terms with a new reality that continues without the presence of two icons—Don Williams and Montgomery Gentry’s Troy Gentry.
After receiving the devastating news that both artists passed in separate incidents on Sept. 8—Don from a brief illness and Troy in a helicopter crash—the music industry desperately sought to come to turns with the dual tragedies. Many artists offered words of comfort and solace through their social media pages. Some memorialized them through song, and others honored them during live shows over the weekend.
Garth Brooks shared a remembrance of Don during his September 11 “Inside Studio G” Facebook Live session. When a fan asked for Garth’s favorite memory from recording at Jack’s Tracks recording studio in Nashville, the superstar recalled walking into the facility to work with producer Allen Reynolds and seeing Don. “The day that I walked in and there was the Gentle Giant sitting there with Allen,” he said.
He then added, “Hats off and just love you to death, Don, and let’s all have great memories of Don Williams and the music will live forever. Speaking of Don Williams, you have to say Troy Gentry. Two of the sweetest men to ever play country music right there. Both of them, though very different ages from each other, both passed way before their time. Just love you guys. All of our thoughts and prayers are going out to their families and those of us who worshiped you and your music.”
While no funeral arrangements have been announced for the Gentle Giant, Don Williams, Troy will be honored in a public ceremony at the Grand Ole Opry house on Thursday at 11 a.m. CT. The ceremony will be livestreamed for those unable to attend.