By Lee Margulies
9:00 AM EDT, April 29, 2013
"A country music fan is the most loyal creature on Earth if you're honest with them," singer George Jones once said, and in death he's paying some of that loyalty back. His funeral service at the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville on Thursday will be open to the public.
"George would have wanted his fans and friends to be able to come and pay their respects along with his family," publicist Kirt Webster said in announcing the decision Sunday. Jones had been a member of the Grand Ole Opry since 1956.
There also will be a private visitation on Wednesday night for family, friends and fellow performers, Webster said.
Jones, regarded by many as the premiere county male vocalist of all time, died Friday at age 81. A two-time Grammy Award winner, he put 167 records on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart.
The family has requested that contributions be made to either the Grand Ole Opry Trust Fund or the Country Music Hall of Fame, to which Jones was inducted in 1992.
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