Kenny Rogers and I have known each other for nearly 20 years. He was kind, caring, witty, funny and humble. I think of all of the memorable times we had together. He called my mother on the phone to say “Hey” to his fellow Texan. My mother is just four months older than Kenny and they started talking about various places in Texas that had changed. The two were so into their phone call, recalling places between her hometown of Brenham and his in Houston, that he was told to end the call so he could get on stage to perform!
When Cory and I became engaged, I was excited to tell Kenny that my favorite song, “Lady” was going to be our wedding song (of course). He surprised us with a serenade, which left me in a puddle of happy tears.
My sister and I had a great time hanging out with him in Oklahoma, just days after 911. She and I were both dressed in pink and we all joked that we looked ready to go on as back-up singers.
When I was pregnant, Kenny and I had a good laugh as I unrolled my poster of him that hung over my bed as a kid for YEARS! (Ralph Macchio hung on the other wall). My mother had mailed the poster to me the week before. Kenny jokingly asked Cory if I had planned to put it over our bed too. He signed it, “Rikki, thanks for being there for me.”
"And somewhere in the darkness, the Gambler he broke even, but in his final words I found an ace that I could keep."
Kenny, knowing that you were there for me too, through so many stages of my life, is the ace that I will keep. I will miss you dearly, friend!