It's hard to believe that it has been that long ago, but it was on May 21, 2006 that Billy Walker, his wife Bettie, bass player Charlie Lilly and guitarist Danny Patten died in a car accident on their way back from a show in Alabama. Billy joined the Grand Ole Opry in 1960 and was nicknamed "The Tall Texan."
During his career that lasted more than 60 years, he had over 30 songs on the country charts. It's hard to believe but his only #1 was "Charlie's Shoes" in 1962. "Funny How Time Slips Away", which is often associated with Billy didn't even make it into the top 20. "Cross the Brazos at Waco" another classic made it to #2.
In addition to his recording, he also hosted an early country syndicated country music show on television, "Country Carnival." Once in a while, RFD-TV will show it in rotation with episodes hosted by Del Reeves.
I always thought Billy did a great job while at the Opry but like many other veterans, he saw his appearances cut back over his final decade at the Opry. Too bad as even at the age of 77, he still had that great voice and personality that shined on the Opry stage.
To remember Billy Walker, here is a performance from Billy at the Grand Ole Opry.