The Grand Ole Opry honored the military at Tuesday night’s Salute the Troops event in Nashville. The famed show invited dozens of America’s homegrown heroes to enjoy an evening of country music and celebration in recognition of their service, past and present.
Some performers for the evening show included Cam, Riley Green, The War and Treaty, Jake Hoot, Riders in the Sky, Dailey & Vincent and Craig Morgan. Dan Rogers, Grand Ole Opry vice president and executive producer, told Fox News Digital that the Opry enjoys a long history of supporting and partnering with the American military.
“For years and years, folks in the military have perpetuated the sounds of country music,” he said. “And, of course, you’ve heard tributes to our fighting men and women in country music for years. And it’s just important to the Opry, really in every single show we do … to let those folks know they’re appreciated.”
Rogers also said the concert aligned perfectly with the themes of Memorial Day, like service, honor, and coming home.
“The message that I can share on behalf of every artist who takes our stage and every fan who comes through the doors is simple — and that’s a heartfelt ‘thank you,’” he said. “We, due to their service, get to come [and] enjoy country music every day. And folks from around the world get to come sit in those pews and listen to country music’s most famous show. So, again, it would be a heartfelt ‘thank you.’”
The Grand Ole Opry always leads from the front when it comes to supporting the military
Retired Army Lt. Gen. Keith Huber, a Salute the Troops special guest, said that he and his colleagues remember the sacrifices made by earlier generations of veterans each and every day.
“Every day is a memorial for those who had the privilege to serve. And for those who gave their lives in defense of this great nation,” he said. The Army man and Green Beret said he considers his association with the Grand Ole Opry a “privilege.”
“Country music is so magical,” Huber said. “It tells a story and in a tempo that people actually listen. The American public doesn’t do very well on the listening perspective; so when you get an artist that can tell a story and people listen — and they reflect upon it and it touches their hearts — it hopefully teaches us to try and be better human beings.”
Army Reserve Command Sgt. Major Andrew Lombardo agreed, saying that the country music industry always leads the charge in terms of supporting the troops.
“All the members and veterans and current serving service members that are here tonight carry on that strong legacy of heroism — the service and sacrifice that we service members make in order to ensure our nation’s freedom,” Lombardo said.