On September 1, 2008, popular country singer and movie actor Jerry Reed died at his home outside Nashville, Tennessee, after a long bout with emphysema, a disease of the lungs that occurs most often in people who smoke.
His longtime booking agent, Carrie Moore-Reed, said that Reed “had been ill for some time.”
The country legend was actually a heavy smoker for many years and had trouble quitting smoking addictive cigarettes. In fact, one of Jerry Reed songs revealed his struggle to kick the habit for good. In 1972, he wrote and recorded the song “Another Puff,” about a man trying to stop smoking cigarettes.
Reed was 71 years old when he died.
A Singer Turned Hollywood Star
In the mid-1970s, Jerry Reed started acting in movies and became a known actor – most especially for his role in the trilogy of road action-comedy films, Smokey and the Bandit. He starred alongside Burt Reynolds, as Reynolds’ truck-driving sidekick called The Snowman. In his last major film role, he played a hateful football coach in 1998’s The Waterboy, starring Adam Sandler.
While his acting career often overshadows his gifts as a prolific country artist, his influence is beyond comparison. He had long established himself as one of the most highly regarded guitarists in Nashville and a songwriter who penned hits for music icons such as Elvis Presley and Johnny Cash. Several of his songs have even become country-rock standards.
“He was still recording right up until he couldn’t anymore,” Carrie Moore-Reed said.
Truly, Jerry Reed is one of the most admirable country icons out there.