The man who over the course of a half century recorded 40 ‘Number 1’ country songs has been silenced, poetically on his 79th birthday.
Haggard had been in failing health for the last few months of his life, being hospitalized for double pneumonia back in February – which led to the cancellation of numerous tour dates in March & April.
He was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1994.
A number of big name country musicians have weighed in on social media, expressing their sadness on the passing of a legend.
Country music has suffered one of the greatest losses it will ever experience Rest in peace Merle Haggard
— Charlie Daniels (@CharlieDaniels) April 6, 2016
Love and prayers for the Haggard family. Merle was a pioneer…a true entertainer…a legend. There will never be another like him.
— Carrie Underwood (@carrieunderwood) April 6, 2016
There are no words to describe the loss & sorrow felt within all of music with the passing of Merle Haggard. Thank God for his life & songs.
— Brad Paisley (@BradPaisley) April 6, 2016