Troy Gentry - Life Remembered

Troy Gentry - Grand Ol Opry Memorial

by JQ

     The Country music world was shook to its core on September 8th, when we learned half of the country duo Montgomery Gentry, Troy Gentry had been killed in a helicopter crash. Gentry, was just 50 years old.

     As the news broke, friends, fans and country artists alike took to social media to pay tribute to Gentry. Blake Shelton took to Instagram sharing an old photo of himself with Gentry sharing how absolutely heartbroken he was to learn about the passing of his friend. Dan + Shay posted a beautiful video of them singing “Something to be Proud of” one of Montgomery Gentry’s hits to honor Gentry.

     The tributes continued on September 14th at Gentry’s memorial, which took place at The Grand Ole Opry. Family, fans, friends and music industry veterans filled the room. Batman signals (Gentry loved the cape crusader) lit up on the walls along with personal photos and videos of Gentry with his family and his career displayed on the Opry’s large screens.

The emotional service celebrated the man Gentry had become rather than his career achievements.

     At the request of Angie, Gentry’s wife, Little Big Town started his service with an emotional version of “The Star-Spangled Banner.” As the group’s famous harmonies filled the room, you could see member Kimberly Schlapman quickly wipe away a tear.

     From speeches by some of Gentry’s close friends fans got to catch a glimpse of a man, not just the artist we all knew and loved. Insights into Troy’s life and heart, friend Storme Warren explained Gentry best. “What he wanted to do was get better — better at loving people, better at loving his family, better at entertaining his fans, better at being a good friend and that inspired me to be better,”.

     The service included songs from country music stars Trace Adkins who sang “Wayfaring Stranger,” while Charlie Daniels (who had invited Montgomery Gentry to join the Opry family 8 years earlier) performed “How Great thou Art”.

     Emotions already high Vince Gill put the audience in tears again as he spoke to Eddie Montgomery, “I would encourage Eddie to lean on this (Opry) family. It’s a good one. Don’t disappear. This family has a long history of loss.”

     The service concluded with a song Gentry had recently recorded, “Better Me”. The lyrics are so hauntly accurate to the man everyone had described, “I ain't saying I'm perfect, but I'm working on a better me”.