Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Fayette | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Warren | Webster

Life of Phil Everly Remembered by Loyal Fan

everly 300CENTRAL CITY, Ky. (1/4/14) The entire music world is in mourning today after the news of the death of Phil Everly yesterday at age 74.

Although Phil Everly was born in Chicago, he always called Muhlenberg County his home.

Marilyn Kirtley, who lives in Greenville, has been a fan and supporter of the Everly Brothers and their Muhlenberg roots for most of her life. She told SurfKY News that the death of Phil Everly has left her in shock.

"I was very saddened and surprised to hear of Phil's death." said Kirtley. "I knew he had been in poor health for several weeks. I was just unaware that it was this severe. Don and Phil were such a great team. We enjoyed having them here for the Everly Brothers Music Festival beginning in the late 1980s. Those memories will always be with me."

The Everly Brothers Homecoming Music Festival began in 1988 and continued each Labor Day weekend for more than a decade. The annual event drew thousands of fans each year from around the world. And because Don and Phil were loved by so many in the music field, a simple invitation from the brothers went a long way in bringing performers such as Chet Atkins, John Prine, The Kentucky Headhunters, Keith Urban and a laundry list of other superstars to Central City.

Kirtley was one of the many hard working, dedicated residents of the county who helped organize the annual event, and also wanted to make sure that people knew about Muhlenberg County's rich musical history.

"I've welcomed fans and made friends from all over the world, who share that common love of the Everly Brothers' unique sound," she said. "Last night, and this morning I've spent all my time answering emails from friends and fans from the Netherlands, England, and Australia about the sad passing of Phil. The Everly Brothers are just loved everywhere, as much as they are loved here in Muhlenberg County. They really are our sons."

Kirtley noted that the Everly musical heritage did not begin with Don and Phil.

"Don and Phil were a result of the Muhlenberg musical heritage." Kirtley said. "It goes back a long way. Their father, Ike Everly, was a thumbpicking legend here, along with Mose Rager and Merle Travis."

Kirtley said that the first time she met Don and Phil was long before the annual homecoming festival began.

"I first met Don and Phil when they were teenagers,” she said. “They were cousins of David Moore, who lived in Central City and who was a friend of my son, Rodney. The brothers were in town, and Rodney was still too young to drive so I took him to meet The Everly Brothers. They were just so nice, and this was at the peak of their popularity. This would have been in the mid to late 1950s sometime."

Kirtley recalls that her relationship with Don and Phil was rekindled when the duo agreed to participate in the yearly homecoming event.

"Originally, when several of us got together to organize the yearly homecoming concert, we also formed an Everly Brothers Fan Club." Kirtley remembered. "At first, we were informed by some individuals in Seattle that we could not form a club because they already had one. But Phil stepped in and gave us permission to form a club here in Muhlenberg County. He was always so very personable and caring when it came to helping out with the homecoming, or anything we needed. He never failed to respond when we asked for help."

Throughout the span of the yearly concerts, Kirtley said that the fan club became somewhat of a hospitality group.

"We would entertain as many as 100 or more fans from around the nation and the world. In fact, a couple from England stopped by my home this summer and stayed a few days. These are the types of friendships and fond memories that will last a lifetime," she said.

Kirtley added that friends have suggested that she make a recorded history of all she remembers about her times with Don and Phil.

"There are just so many great memories, so many wonderful times, I guess I could,” she said. “But today is a memory I wish I could forget. It is just such a sad day for me, and for so many, who loved and continue to love The Everly Brothers."

Paul McRee
SurfKY News Reporter

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

3/12 - 718 switched from reg 2 to hopkins only
3/13 - 16
447 on Feb 15th (Val ad ended) switched to kid books
CHANGED TO SIMPLE AD ON 2/19 619 HITS

Stock Report

1 DOW 16,408.54
-16.31 (-0.10%)    
2 S&P 1,864.85
+2.54 (0.14%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,095.52
+9.29 (0.23%)    
3/12 - 718 switched from reg 2 to hopkins only
3/13 - 16
447 on Feb 15th (Val ad ended) switched to kid books
CHANGED TO SIMPLE AD ON 2/19 619 HITS
3/12 - 718 switched from reg 2 to hopkins only
3/13 - 16
447 on Feb 15th (Val ad ended) switched to kid books
CHANGED TO SIMPLE AD ON 2/19 619 HITS

In Other News...

Free Sports Physical Dates Set for Murray, Calloway, Eastwood Students

MURRAY, Ky. (4/19/14) – Murray-Calloway County Hospital will host its annual free sports physicals to local middle and… Read More

Kentucky State Parks Foundation Awards Grants for Trail Improvements

FRANKFORT, Ky. (4/20/14) — The Kentucky State Parks Foundation has awarded matching grants to two Kentucky State Parks… Read More
3/12 - 718 switched from reg 2 to hopkins only
3/13 - 16
447 on Feb 15th (Val ad ended) switched to kid books
CHANGED TO SIMPLE AD ON 2/19 619 HITS

Most Read This Week (Site-Wide)

April 16, 2014 19578

UPDATE- Sheriff's Office Following Leads…

in Top Stories by Taylor Riley, SurfKY News Reporter
April 17, 2014 4426

KSP Nabs St. Charles Man Wanted by U.S.…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
April 16, 2014 3233

Sheriff's Deputies Nab Central City…

in Top Stories by Sheriff Curtis McGehee
April 17, 2014 3004

Meet The Hopkins County Magistrate…

in News by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
April 16, 2014 1771

Rand Paul - 'We Need a New President'

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News Reporter

Most Read Stories from Hopkins County

April 17, 2014 4426

KSP Nabs St. Charles Man Wanted by U.S.…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
April 18, 2014 1162

Talking Teen Trashed Telephone Pole,…

in Top Stories by MPD
April 18, 2014 928

Earlington Traffic Stop Results in Meth…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
April 19, 2014 776

Fifth Third on Main Street Comes Down

in Top Stories by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
April 17, 2014 752

Center Street-Island Ford Connector in…

in Top Stories by Rebecca Hanchett

Most Read Stories from Owensboro

April 16, 2014 1047

New Home Health Care Opens in Owensboro

in News by Dennis Beard, SurfKY News
April 18, 2014 988

Daviess County School Board Hears…

in News by Dennis Beard, SurfKY News
April 18, 2014 940

One Arrested, Another Injured in Single…

in News by J.D. Marksberry
April 16, 2014 822

DCPS to Celebrate National Volunteer Week

in News by Lora Wimsatt
April 17, 2014 310

Owensboro Public Works Declares 'War on…

in Top Stories by Abby Shelton

Most Read Stories from Muhlenberg County

April 16, 2014 3233

Sheriff's Deputies Nab Central City…

in Top Stories by Sheriff Curtis McGehee
April 16, 2014 1407

South Carrollton Woman Injured in Head-on…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
April 17, 2014 1375

Bremen Man Charged for Possession of…

in Top Stories by Muhlenberg Sheriff Curtis McGehee
April 16, 2014 1248

Three Injured in Kentucky 70 Collision

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
April 17, 2014 1201

Watson Family Tragedy Inspires Muhlenberg…

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News Reporter

SurfKY News Group, Inc. Central Office & Printing Division
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431  •  270.452.2249 (fax)
Main Number: 270.452.2727 (phone)  •  Printing Division Direct Line: 270.821.8600 (phone)

SurfKY Owensboro News Bureau
920 Frederica St. / Suite 210  •  Owensboro, KY 42301  •  270.683-8060 (phone)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social 06social 21social 22social 04social 03