Shepard's first chart appearance was 1953's duet with Ferlin Husky, with "A Dear John Letter". It was a No. 1 smash, and also became a major crossover pop hit, peaking at No. 4 on the Billboard pop chart. The song struck a chord with audiences as it was a half-spoken duet about a soldier in the Korean War. Their follow-up, "Forgive Me John", was another crossover hit, which peaked in the Top 10 on the country chart and the top 25 on the pop chart. Because at 20 she was still a minor, Shepard's parents signed her rights to Husky so she could tour. She had great success for many years and was one of the longest living members of the Opry. For more about her long career, click here.
Here is my conversation with her nephew Jerry Gates about the great Jean Shepherd