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The Year in Country 2013 -- Country Music Patriarch George Jones Dies

Image courtesy of Webster PR (via ABC News Radio)
Image courtesy of Webster PR (via ABC News Radio)

One of country music's defining artists, George Jones , passed away on April 26, 2013 at age 81.

Jones's singular vocal performances on country standards like "He Stopped Loving Her Today," "The Grand Tour" and "She Thinks I Still Care" made him a primary influence on the likes of George Strait and Garth Brooks . They were among the stars paying tribute to Jones at an all-star concert in Nashville in November. Blake Shelton , Miranda Lambert , Eric Church , Brad Paisley , Martina McBride , Dierks Bentley , and Alan Jackson were also on the bill for that concert, which was originally intended to be the final concert on Jones' farewell tour. 

George Strait and Alan Jackson also paid tribute to Jones with a performance of "He Stopped Loving Her Today" at the CMA Awards in November.

Jones's funeral was held May 2 at the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville. Vince Gill provided the emotional high point of the service when he broke down in tears while performing "Go Rest High on That Mountain." Former first lady Laura Bush , Kenny Chesney , Brad Paisley, Alan Jackson, and Garth Brooks also were on hand for that service.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio