Remembering Country Music Legend Eddy Arnold - | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Remembering Country Music Legend Eddy Arnold

Ryman Auditorium Ryman Auditorium
Eddy Arnold Eddy Arnold
Don Cusic Don Cusic
Hank Cochran Hank Cochran
Ralph Emery Ralph Emery

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The man credited with putting a tuxedo on country music was laid to rest Wednesday.

Hundreds of people gathered at the Ryman Auditorium to remember country music legend Richard Edward "Eddy" Arnold.

Arnold died last week, a week before his 90th birthday. On Tuesday and Wednesday, fans and friends attended the visitation held at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.

Friends and fans gathered to remember Arnold who began his music career at 16. He leaves behind a string of hits, awards and honors.

"He was a dear friend and one that I will always remember," said one mourner.

"I know people can't last forever, but I'll remember him for good songs," said friend, Ralph Emery, who is recognized as the dean of country music broadcasters. "My favorite Eddy Arnold song was ‘Then You Can Tell Me Goodbye.' A John D. Loudermilk song. So pretty and he liked pretty songs."

Hank Cochran wrote one of those songs, "Make the World Go Away," which became a hit for Arnold in 1965.

"Mr. Arnold, I said, boy you've done me up proud here," the songwriter said.

Sharecropper, cowboy and chart-topper, Eddy Arnold, for many people, was country music.

"He put a tuxedo on country music," said Don Cusic, a country music historian.

Cusic helped write Arnold's autobiography and said Arnold was like a father to him. He credits Arnold with putting Music City on the map.

"He was a hero of mine as a kid. I never outgrew that," said another mourner. "He will always be a hero to me."

In 1966, he was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. A year later, he won Entertainer of the Year at the Country Music Association's first awards program.

Arnold is survived by two children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.  His wife, Sally Gayhart Arnold, of 66 years preceded him in death in March.

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