Country Music Hall of Famer and Grand Ole Opry member, Mel Tillis is recovering very well from colon surgery, according to his representative Don Murry Grubbs. The 83-year-old country singer/songwriter/actor underwent colon surgery earlier this month, January 8, 2016 at Centennial Medical Center, a 641 bed, general medical and surgical hospital located in Nashville, TN. After complications from the surgery were resolved, Mel still remains hospitalized and under his doctor’s care.
The official Facebook page for the Country Music Cruise 2016 posted on Tuesday that Tillis needed to have emergency colon surgery. After the announcement, media reports claimed that Mel was in critical condition after the emergency colon surgery. Recently, The Oak Ridge Boys and throngs of fellow musicians kindly asked for prayers for Mel.
The Oak Ridge Boys were set to perform alongside Mel Tillis on the Country Music Cruise 2016, which departed on Saturday, January 16, 2016 from Fort Lauderdale, Fla. without Mel. “We regret that Mel Tillis will not be joining us on the Country Music Cruise 2016,” the cruise announced as the Country music star’s surgery was completed. “Mel has had to have emergency colon surgery. We have been told that he is doing fine, but will need several weeks of recovery time. We wish him a full and speedy recovery and hope he can join us on a future cruise.” Bobby Bare is filling in for Mel on the cruise.
Late Friday, Mel’s representative Don Murry Grubbs said that the singer, known for his stutter, is “on the road to recovery.” He continues. “Doctors said he’s doing fine and on the right track. While still being hospitalized Grubbs says that his doctors have a bright outlook for the star. “Mel is doing great, and currently not in critical condition. He is sitting up watching TV and is in good spirits.”
Mel is the father of country singer Pam Tillis and is known around the world for hits including “Good Woman Blues,” “Heart Healer,” “I Believe in You,” “Good Woman Blues” and “I Ain’t Never.” Through his singing, he overcame a stutter that developed during his childhood. In all of his songs, he never once showed any stuttering. Fans were amazed. His iconic stutter only showed when he spoke… and fans loved him.
With his enduring popularity and legendary 45-year career, Mel built his own theater in Branson, Missouri which hosts innumerable country acts each year. The theater has gone on to become a raging success for the town.
Wherever he goes, he still attracts crowds who love his easygoing manner, his songs, his stories and his natural ability to make people laugh. His ability to find humor just about anywhere is one of his best assets and explains his ability to masterfully craft a phrase into a memorable self-penned song.
Among Mel Tillis’ many song written hits recorded by some of country’s biggest names, including: “Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love to Town” (Kenny Rogers), “Detroit City” (Bobby Bare), “Snakes Crawl At Night,” (Charley Pride), “Burning Memories” (Ray Price), and “I’m Tired” (Ricky Skaggs and Webb Pierce). “Ruby” received a Special Citation of Achievement in 2001 from Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI) for three million broadcast performances of the song, placing it in a very select group of worldwide favorites.
Mel Tillis’ own hits include “Coca-Cola Cowboy,” and “Take Me Back to Tulsa.” These and others earned him induction in the Nashville Songwriters Association International Hall of Fame.
Tillis is also a natural comic and with the release of his 2010 album, “You Ain’t Gonna Believe This,” he proved it. The album hit the Number 3 spot on the charts and earned Mel a Grammy nomination. Mel’s impressive and hilarious character acting roles in movies like Smokey & The Bandit II and Uphill All The Way show that he is also a natural at humor in acting.
In 2013, he received the highest award given to artists and arts patrons by the U.S. Government, the National Medal of Arts presented to him by President Barrack Obama. Of course, we all know that Mel is a national treasure.
We are keeping both Mel Tillis and his family in our thoughts and prayers.