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Joe Bonsall of The Oak Ridge Boys, country music legend, dies at 76

Joe Bonsall, a longtime member of the legendary country music quartet The Oak Ridge Boys, passed away on Tuesday due to complications from Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). He was 76 years old.

“Joe loved to sing,” read a statement on Bonsall’s official website, announcing his passing. “He loved to read. He loved to write. He loved to play banjo. He loved working on the farm. And he loved the Philadelphia Phillies. But Jesus and his family always came first—and we will see him again on the Promised Day.”

Born Joseph S. Bonsall Jr., he announced his retirement from The Oak Ridge Boys’ ongoing Farewell Tour on January 3, 2024, due to worsening health issues and immobility.

“Many of you know I have been battling a slow onset (over four years now) of a neuromuscular disorder. I am now to a point that walking is impossible so I have basically retired from the road. It has just gotten too difficult,” Joe shared in a statement on the social platform X.

“It has been a great 50 years, and I am thankful to all the Oak Ridge Boys band crew and staff for the constant love and support shown to me through it all,” he continued. “I will never forget, and for those of you who have been constantly holding me up in prayer, I thank you and ask for you to keep on praying.”

Bonsall joined The Oak Ridge Boys in 1973, singing tenor. The group’s illustrious career spanning over five decades produced more than 30 top-five country hits, nearly half of which were chart-toppers. Notable songs include “Leaving Louisiana in the Broad Daylight,” “Bobbie Sue,” “American Made,” and their 1981 RIAA-certified double-platinum hit “Elvira.”

The group, also comprised of Duane Allen, William Lee Golden, and Richard Sterban, achieved significant success. They won five Grammy Awards and are members of both the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Gospel Music Hall of Fame.

Joe Bonsall is survived by his wife, two daughters, two grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.

Source: ABC News, Particle News