By Jonathan Wilson
Jimmy Dean, the country music legend and entrepreneur known for his sausage brand, died in his home outside Richmond, Virginia last night.
Jimmy Dean's start in the music business came as an accordionist at a tavern near Bolling Air Force Base in Washington, D.C., where he was stationed in the 1940s. He later drew a strong following through appearance on Washington-area radio.
He went on to a successful entertainment career in the 1950s and '60s that included the nationally televised "The Jimmy Dean Show." He founded the Jimmy Dean Meat Company in 1969, and sold the company to the Sara Lee Corporation in 1984.
In August of last year he discussed his success with WAMU Bluegrass Country's Tom "Cat" Reeder.
"I've said it a lot of times, if my luck stops tomorrow morning, I've had more than my share of it," Dean said.
Jimmy Dean was 81 years old.