Dolly Parton Offers Tearful Tribute to Kenny Rogers: ‘My Heart Is Broken’ (Video)

“Fly high, Kenny, straight to the arms of God”

dolly parton kenny rogers
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Dolly Parton on Saturday offered a tearful tribute to her friend and frequent singing partner Kenny Rogers, who died late Friday night at age 81.

“You never know how much you love somebody until they’re gone,” Parton tweeted. “I’ve had so many wonderful years and wonderful times with my friend Kenny, but above all the music and the success I loved him as a wonderful man and a true friend.”

Parton also posted a video message, clutching a photo of her “Islands in the Stream” duet partner and occasionally tearing up. “I couldn’t believe it this morning,” she said about learning of his passing. “I love Kenny with all my heart, and my heart is broken.”

The singer also acknowledged the current coronavirus pandemic that is keeping many Americans homebound and anxious. “I know that we know Kenny is in a better place than we are today,” she said. “But I’m pretty sure he’s going to be talking to God sometime today, if he ain’t already, and he’s going to be asking Him to spread some light on a bunch of this darkness going on here.”

“Fly high, Kenny, straight to the arms of God,” she concluded. “And to the rest of you, keep the faith.”

Rogers, who died late Friday, was a three-time Grammy Award-winning country legend whose collaborations with Parton produced some of his biggest hits, including their duets “Islands in the Stream” and “Real Love.”

In his six-decade career, Rogers recorded 24 No. 1 hits, including “The Gambler,” “Lady,” “Lucille,” “She Believes In Me” and “Through the Years.” The Country Music Hall of Fame member won six CMA Awards and three Grammys.

Watch Parton’s tribute below.