Dolly Parton Shares Emotional Message After Leslie Jordan’s Death: ‘Rest in Peace Lil’ Brother’

by Blake Ells
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Dolly Parton is joining celebrities across the country paying tribute to Leslie Jordan. The 67-year-old actor died on Monday in an automobile accident. He was driving when he suffered a medical emergency and crashed into the side of a building. There are no details on the emergency.

Dolly Parton was friends with Leslie Jordan. Jordan grew up in Chattanooga, Tenn., not far from Dolly Parton’s home in Pigeon Forge. Parton paid tribute to her late friend in a post on Monday.

“Well I am as hurt and shocked as if I have lost a family member. Leslie and I had a special bond, I think the world felt they had a special bond with him. I know people always say, ‘Oh, they will be missed,’ but in this case, that could not be more true. He will be missed by everyone who knew him personally and by everyone who was entertained by him. Rest in peace lil’ brother,” Dolly Parton shared via social media.

Leslie Jordan starred in the NBC series Will & Grace. One of his co-stars on the sitcom joined in the mourning of the actor when the news broke.

“My heart is broken,” said Sean Hayes. “Leslie Jordan was one of the funniest people I ever had the pleasure of working with. Everyone who ever met him, loved him. There will never be anyone like him. A unique talent with an enormous, caring heart. You will be missed, my dear friend.”

Dolly Parton Joins Celebrities Mourning the Death of Leslie Jordan

While Dolly Parton and Leslie Jordan grew up in the same part of Tennessee, their bond likely strengthened when Leslie Jordan took a shot at Nashville. He recorded a twangy gospel album that was released in 2021 titled Company’s Comin.’ The album was loaded with country music guests, including Dolly Parton.

Company’s Comin’ also featured appearances by Brandi Carlile, TJ Osborne, Tanya Tucker, Eddie Vedder, Ashley McBryde and Chris Stapleton among others. The record made Leslie Jordan a bit of a fixture in the Music City for a while. He even celebrated with a big, guest-filled show at Ryman Auditorium. Leslie Jordan revealed the music that he listened to in his East Tennessee home when the album was released.

“There was so much comfort in those old songs,” he said of the gospel sound. “I’d sing them out loud with the congregation on Sunday mornings, and then softer to myself on the weekdays in between.”

He was an Emmy award winning actor, and that music from home never left him. He was singing and sharing it just a day before his death.