Roy Clark, Country star and 'Hee Haw' host, dies at 85

Posted at 11:27 AM, Nov 15, 2018

Country music legend Roy Clark has died. He was 85. 

Clark died Thursday due to complications from pneumonia at his home in Tulsa, Oklahoma. 

Born in Meherrin, Virginia, Clark learned to play guitar, fiddle and banjo. His family performed together throughout Clark’s teenage years.

Read more: Country stars react to Roy Clark's death

By the time he turned 20, he had played several clubs and toured with Grandpa Jones. He went on to play lead guitar for Jimmy Dean, Wanda Jackson and Hank Thompson. 

After going on Johnny Carson's “Tonight Show” with Jimmy Dean in the early 1960s, Clark was noticed in Hollywood.

He signed to Capitol Records and even went on to have a reoccurring guest role on “The Beverly Hillbillies.” 

However, his big claim to fame would come in 1969 with the start of a show set in Kornfield Kounty. He began co-hosting “Hee Haw” with Buck Owens and his popularity soared.

Newschannel5 spoke with one of Roy's cast members about working with him. Mackenzie Colt said first and foremost, Roy was a musician: "He could play the fire out of that guitar, just such a great musician," she told us. "He could play anything."

She also said that fun-loving always-smiling on camera persona was who he really was. "He was a funny man, so nice and so kind. His smile could light up a room."

In 1987 Roy Clark joined the Grand Ole Opry just a few years after he opened his own theater in Branson, Missouri.

He became a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2009.