WATCH: Soldiers Cover Randy Travis Iconic Hit ‘Three Wooden Crosses’

by Matthew Wilson
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Two U.S. soldiers deliver the goods with this rendition of a Randy Travis classic. They offer a moving and emotional version of “Three Wooden Crosses.”

Even Randy Travis would enjoy this moving rendition of his tune. Friends Whitley and Walker were just goofing around when they sang this cover back in 2013. They wanted to find a way to put their own spin on the country music great’s song. Thus, the two came up with this moving video.

Neither of the soldiers went for an extravagant showcase. The video lives in simplicity with just the two soldiers singing to a Travis record playing in the background. But that’s what makes their cover so powerful and worth watching.

Behind the Randy Travis Song

Written by Kim Williams and Doug Johnson, “Three Wooden Crosses” appeared on Travis’ 2002 “Rise and Shine.”

The tune proved to be instantly successful and even became one of Travis’ most recognized songs. “Three Wooden Crosses” netted the singer a No. 1 hit and a CMA Award. Not bad for a song about a bus headed down to Mexico. The tune is tragic in nature, featuring a mystery where listeners have to guess the three crosses on the highway. Passengers include a farmer, a teacher, a prostitute, and a preacher.

The tune comments on the lasting impacts that people leave behind after their deaths. It is also a song of redemption and the power of forgiveness.

“I think we both knew that it would be the hooker,” Johnson told WSLC. “It seemed to fit in with the theme of forgiveness and understanding that we were going for. I am always moved by messages of mercy, and by stories of outcasts who are saved by love.”

Both Johnson and Williams worked together after Johnson developed the idea for a cast of characters on a bus. Williams was instantly sold by the idea.

“That was one of the best opening lines to a song I’d ever heard,” Williams recalls. “I remember telling Doug that I didn’t know where this was going – but I couldn’t wait to find out!”

Thus a hit was quickly born.

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