Gary Church / Facebook
While almost every country artist has a band that backs them up for every album and show, no backing band is more recognizable than the Strangers. The group, which formed in Bakersfield, California in the 1960s, became famous as the backing band for country music superstar Merle Haggard.
Although the group mainly toured with Merle, they also released some of their own material between 1969-1973. These records made their name all the more recognizable in country music, and further proved the depth of their members’ talents.
Still, the Strangers always remained closely attached to Merle. So after he passed away in 2015, the fate of the Strangers sort of hung in the balance.
It was finally decided that the Strangers would help Merle’s legacy live on by continuing to tour and play his songs. His sons, Ben and Noel, have tagged along with the group to serve as lead vocalists.
After everything they’ve been through, one member of the Strangers is in desperate need of some prayers right now. Texas artist John Cody Carter took to Facebook to share some news about Strangers trumpet and trombone player Gary Church, and it wasn’t good news.
As John shared, Gary was involved in a terrible car accident after another car t-boned him while driving through an intersection. He revealed that Gary is currently in the ICU, and seems to be dealing with some serious injuries.
“He had some movement of his left leg and left arm today [February 1], but still in critical condition…Gary has not opened his eyes yet…” John wrote.
On Friday (February 2), Merle’s son, Noel, took to his own Facebook to ask his friends and followers to continue to pray for Gary. He is clearly in need of all of the prayers he can get.
“Please say a prayer for long time Stranger and our dear friend, Gary Church,” Noel pleaded.
We can’t imagine what Gary’s friends and family members must be going through right now. We’ll be keeping all of them in our thoughts while we pray for his recovery.
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