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The Death of Gary Stewart Is Just So Heartbreaking

Gary Stewart Death
by
  • Arden is a Senior Country Music Journalist for Country Thang Daily, specializing in classic hits and contemporary chart-toppers.
  • Prior to joining Country Thang Daily, Arden wrote for Billboard and People magazine, covering country music legends and emerging artists.
  • Arden holds a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Tennessee, with a minor in Music Studies.

Gary Stewart’s death on December 16, 2003, was just so tragic and shocking. Stewart was an American country singer and songwriter. He was popularly known for his unique vibrato voice and was known as the “King of Honkytonk.” Throughout his career, Stewart has had several country chart hits. He is best known for his song, “She’s Actin’ Single (I’m Drinkin’ Doubles),” which was included in the U.S. country singles chart.

What Caused Gary Stewart’s Death?

Mary Lou Stewart, Gary’s wife of almost 43 years, died on November 26, 2003, due to pneumonia. Because of this tragic event, Gary canceled his scheduled concert appearances at Billy Bob’s. Later on, Gary’s friends revealed that the singer was so depressed by the death of his wife.

On December 16, Bill Hardman, his close friend, and his daughter’s boyfriend went to his home in Fort Pierce, Florida to check on Gary. Unfortunately, they discovered the dead body of the singer with a self-inflicted gunshot wound on his neck.

Gary Stewart was born on May 28, 1945, in Jenkins, Kentucky. His family moved to Fort Pierce after his father got injured in a mining accident. When he was still a teenager, he played country and rock music in bars. Mel Tillis was the one who encouraged and discovered him. One of the best Gary Stewart songs was his cover of “Ramblin’ Man,” which was originally recorded by the Allman Brothers. It peaked at number 63 on the charts. However, his succeeding single, “Drinkin’ Thing,” made it to the Top 10. And from that moment on, he was on his way.

Stewart’s album Out of Hand, released in 1975, jumped to number. 6 on the Billboard country album chart. Consequently, this album includes his number 1 hit song, “She’s Actin’ Single (I’m Drinkin’ Doubles).”

Gary Stewart’s death comes as a surprise to his family and friends, most especially since the country music artist died just one month after his wife died.

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