Stars are mourning the sudden death of country icon Earl Thomas Conley.
As RadarOnline.com has learned, the “Once In a Blue Moon” singer died this Wednesday, April 10, at 12:20 a.m. in Nashville.
His brother Fred told The Tennessean he suffered from a condition similar to dementia for some time, and in his last days, his health declined.
“He just kept losing ground,” the singer’s sibling said. “I’m brokenhearted.”
Following news of his passing, country musicians, celebrities and fans took to social media to voice their sadness.
In 2002, Conley co-wrote Blake Shelton’s Top 20 hit “All Over Me” along with Michael Pyle, after which he and Shelton, 42, remained close friends.
On Instagram and Twitter, Shelton posted an emotional tribute to Conley.
“My heart is absolutely destroyed today… I’m sad to report that Earl Thomas Conley passed away very early this morning,” Shelton, 42, wrote along with a photo of the two looking happy during a joint performance.
“Earl was my all time favorite singer, hero and my friend. Prayers to his family. We will all miss you deeply my brother. Now go rest,” he added.
In response to Shelton’s Twitter post, “Walk Away Joe” singer Trisha Yearwood wrote: “I am so sad to hear this news. ETC you will be greatly missed.”
John Rich followed. “So sad to hear #EarlThomasConley passed away today. He was a huge influence on my style and songwriting. I studied his records like text books and could play every note of every song. Truly one of the all time greats in country music,” he wrote.
Toby Keith also tweeted about the legend’s death, calling him an “all-time great.”
“Earl Thomas Conley passed away today. Huge influence on me. Loved him. Prayers to his family,” he tweeted.
Maggie Rose voiced her condolences on Twitter as did The Oak Ridge Boys, who wrote: “Rest In Peace singing brother Earl Thomas Conley gone this morning at age 77 ... so very sad.”
Conley is survived by his 22-year-old daughter, Erinn Scates. Following his death, she told The Tennessean “he was a great dad, and he filled our lives with color.”
R.I.P. Earl Thomas Conley.