Donna Meade Dean & Jimmy Dean Life

Donna Meade Dean & Jimmy Dean life included music and business. Jimmy Dean died on Sunday at age 81 in home in Virginia and his wife said it was sudden. Jimmy Dean was a country music legend, an entrepreneur known for his sausage brand, and wife Donna Meade Dean, who always stayed by his side.

“Sausage is a great deal like life,” Jimmy Dean used to say on one of his sausage ads. “You get out of it about what you put into it.” In dozens of commercials that were broadcast for more than 30 years, Sara Lee bought the company in 1984 but kept Dean as a spokesman until 2003. He represented the product as a wholesome family food, nutritious and delicious.

Dean, came across as honest and his public personality was already well established by the time he began selling sausages. He was a popular country singer who recorded his first song, “Bumming Around,” in 1953, and whose 1961 novelty number, “Big Bad John,” spent five weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard charts. From 1963 to 1966, Jimmy Dean had his own television variety series, “The Jimmy Dean Show,” which featured country music, dancing and comic banter.

Jimmy Dean’s persona was always one of straightforwardness and sincerity, and when his career turned from performing to sausage-making, he remained true to his roots. They slaughtered hogs on the family farm in Plainview. “We’d buy a hog, fatten it out and butcher it,” he said in a 1961 interview with The New York World Telegram and Sun. “One of us would have to knock that hog on the head, and we’d have fights over who was going to do it. Then Mom would stick it.”

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