Read Dolly Parton’s Moving Words After Her Friend, Kenny Rogers Dies


Across social media, friends and fans mourned country music legend Kenny Rogers.


Rogers, the smooth, Grammy-winning balladeer who spanned jazz, folk, country and pop with such hits as “Lucille,” “Lady” and “Islands in the Stream” and embraced his persona as “The Gambler” on record and on TV, died Friday night. He was 81.


The Rogers family announced his death on Twitter. They said he died "peacefully" under hospice care at his home in Sandy Springs, Georgia.


Early Saturday, celebrities reacted to the news.


Dolly Parton honored her "singing partner" with a video tribute on Twitter.


"I know that we all know that Kenny is in a better place than we are today and I'm pretty sure that he's going to be talking to God sometime today... and he's going to be asking him to spread some light on a bunch of this darkness," Parton said in her video. "I loved Kenny with all my heart. My heart's broken. A big ol' chunk of it has gone with him today."


Parton then got emotional as she held up a photo of her and Rogers.


"God bless you Kenny, fly high straight into the arms of God," Parton said. "To the rest of you, keep the faith."


Blake Shelton remembered Rogers as always being a "kind and fun" person.


"I can’t express on Twitter the impact Kenny Rogers the artist and the man had on me. He was always very kind and fun to be around. Rest In Peace Gambler...," the "Austin" artist wrote.


And country artist Tanya Tucker issued a statement to honor Rogers.


"What a career, what a talent, what a legacy. Now this world is left with a big shadow, center stage where Kenny Rogers stood. No one else can take his place. Now he’s taken his place amongst the Heavenly stars. It’s a very sad day for all of us. But God is smiling. Rest easy my friend," she said.


Billy Ray Cyrus shared a photo of him, his daughter Miley, Parton and Rogers to Twitter.


“No one bridged the gap between country and pop more often and better than K.R. He will be missed but his music and diverse style of story-telling will live on forever," Cyrus captioned the photo.


Piers Morgan shared a photo of Rogers to express his sadness. "RIP Kenny Rogers, 81. What incredibly sad news. One of the all-time great country music stars & an utterly charming man," Morgan wrote.

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