William Lee Golden, Simone Golden, Richard Sterban, and Donna Sterban with the families of Lon "Deacon" Freeman and Wally Fowler at the Tennessee Music Pathways Oak Ridge Boys marker in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Photo by Jeremy Westby

Oak Ridge Boys Honored By Tennessee Department Of Tourist Development

The Oak Ridge Boys were honored by The Tennessee Department of Tourist Development with the unveiling of the “Tennessee Music Pathways” marker in Oak Ridge, Tennessee on Monday, November 20. William Lee Golden and Richard Sterban were in attendance representing The Oak Ridge Boys along with Tennessee Representative John Reagan, Oak Ridge Mayor, Warren Gooch, and family members of former Oak Ridge Boys’ Wally Fowler and Lon “Deacon” Freeman, both original members of The Oak Ridge Quartet. Oak Ridge Mayor, Warren Gooch also presented The Oak Ridge Boys with a key to the city and a proclamation honoring their contributions to the city.

“It was a very special day,” shares William Lee Golden. “Being part of this remarkable group is something I never take for granted. Our journey has been uniquely blessed and one that very few have had the opportunity to achieve. I am thankful to Duane Allen, Joe Bonsall, and Richard Sterban for their contributions to The Oak Ridge Boys, along with our band and co-workers. A special thank you to Gus Arrendale and Springer Mountain Farms for helping make this day possible!”

“I can’t think of anywhere I would rather have been than at the Grove Theater in Oak Ridge with the kind folks at The Tennessee Department of Tourist Development who worked so hard to design this marker,” expresses Richard Sterban. “The Oak Ridge Boys as a group goes back 80 years to the original members, Wally Fowler, Lon “Deacon” Freeman, Curly Kinsey, and Johnny New, and we have never forgotten them or their contributions. It has been a privilege to build on that.”

The Oak Ridge Boys are officially celebrating their 50th Anniversary this year and recently announced their American Made: Farewell Tour. The group, Duane Allen (1966), Joe Bonsall (1973), William Lee Golden (1965), and Richard Sterban (1972) shared the announcement with Billboard and People, as a way to celebrate with their fans.

The Oak Ridge Boys have received four Academy of Country Music, two American Music, five Billboard, four Country Music Association, five Grammy, and twelve Dove Awards, just to name a few. They are members of the Grand Ole Opry, the Gospel Music Hall of Fame, the Vocal Group Hall of Fame, and the Country Music Hall of Fame. They have achieved seventeen #1 hits including “Leaving Louisiana In The Broad Daylight,” “Bobbie Sue,” “Trying To Love Two Women,” “(I’m Settin’) Fancy Free,” “American Made,” and the unforgettable “Elvira.” With thirty-seven Top 20 country hits, and with twelve gold, three platinum, and one double-platinum album, The Oak Ridge Boys have made their mark in every facet of the gospel, pop, and country music industry.

About Jerry Holthouse

Music editor for Nashville.com. Jerry Holthouse is a content writer, songwriter and a graphic designer. He owns and runs Holthouse Creative, a full service creative agency. He is an avid outdoorsman and a lover of everything music. You can contact him at JerryHolthouse@Nashville.com

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