Dolly Parton Speaks Out on Donating to COVID-19 Fund to Create Vaccine

by Josh Lanier

Dolly Parton was on Today Tuesday to promote her many upcoming projects when she found out she was trending online for her $1 million donation to fight COVID-19. Doctors used her donation to help fund research that may have led to a vaccine.

Today show hosts asked Parton about the donation and if she knew the news had gone viral.

“I’m just happy that anything I do can help somebody else,” she said. “When I donated the money to the COVID fund, I just wanted it to do good. And evidently, it is. Let’s hope we find a cure real soon.”

The 74-year-old icon tweeted about exchange.

According to the New England Journal of Medicine, The Dolly Parton COVID-19 Research Fund donated $1 million to the Vanderbilt University Medical Center in April. The medical center has been crucial in the development of a vaccine for the virus. The labs worked with the U.S. biotechnology firm Moderna.

Moderna announced this week that their labs had created a potential vaccine for the coronavirus that is 95 percent effective, the BBC reported. Additionally, the pharmaceutical company Pfizer announced they created a separate successful vaccine last week.

She encouraged her followers to also make contributions of their own.

Dolly Parton Is Friends With COVID-19 Researcher

Dolly Parton said she was inspired to donate because of her friendship with Dr. Naji Abumrad. His son, Jad Abumrad, co-hosts and produces Parton’s podcast Dolly Parton’s America.

“My longtime friend Dr. Naji Abumrad, who’s been involved in research at Vanderbilt for many years, informed me that they were making some exciting advancements towards that research of the coronavirus for a cure. I am making a donation of $1 million to Vanderbilt towards that research and to encourage people that can afford it to make donations,” she wrote in an April Instagram post.

It’s been a busy year for Parton. She’s promoting her new book Dolly Parton, Songteller: My Life in Lyrics. In addition to dropping a new Christmas album, she stars in Netflix’s Dolly Parton’s Christmas on the Square. The streaming giant will release the special on Nov. 22.