Rick Nelson Tribute

December 31, 1985: Rick Nelson dies at the age of 45

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On Monday 30 December, following a performance in Guntersville, Alabama (where Rick's last number was Buddy Holly's 'Rave On'), Rick, his fiancee, Helen Blair, and five members of The Stone Canyon Band boarded a charter plane to fly to their next venue in Dallas. The plane, once owned by Jerry Lee Lewis, was not in very good condition.

After take-off, the pilot radioed that smoke was seeping into the cockpit. He attempted an emergency landing on a highway and all seemed well when the plane landed intact. But it burst into flames on the ground, killing all seven passengers.A memorial service was held at the Forest Lawn Memorial Park in California, and a show featuring Rick, Fats Domino, Johnny Cash, Jerry lee Lewis and Roy Orbison, which had been recorded before his death, was aired on American television as a tribute to Rick.

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