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Beloved ‘Hee Haw’ Star Roni Stoneman Dead at 85

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Roni Stoneman, a legendary banjo player and regular cast member on the hit television show ‘Hee Haw,’ has reportedly died at the age of 85. Nicknamed the, ‘First Lady of the Banjo,’ Stoneman graced the screen playing the iconic role of Ida Lee Nagger, otherwise known as the ‘Ironing Board Lady.’

The late actress reportedly passed away on Thursday. A cause of death has not yet been revealed. Born to a family of 13 children, Stoneman got her start playing in a band that included members of her family. That band was called the Stoneman Family band.

Country Music Hall of Fame CEO Kyle Young called Stoneman a, “great talent and strong woman,” adding…

“For Roni Stoneman, known as ‘The First Lady of the Banjo,’ country music was a birthright and her life’s work,” he wrote. “The second youngest of 23 children born to Hattie and Ernest ‘Pop’ Stoneman, Roni was an integral part of a bedrock country music family, who were longtime fixtures in the country music scene of Washington, DC. For 18 years on ‘Hee Haw,’ she stole scenes as both a skillful banjo player and as a comical, gap-toothed country character.”

https://www.billboard.com/music/country/roni-stoneman-dead-hee-haw-star-dies-obituary-1235612618/

Hee Haw, widely considered one of the most influential television programs of the American 1970s, started airing in 1969. The show’s success is still talked about to this day, with the program being credited for making country music appeal to a wider audience.

In addition to working on Hee Haw, Stoneman also appeared in the Burt Reynolds film entitled, W.W. and the Disco King, which was released in 1975. It’s safe to say that the 1970s were a great decade for Stoneman.

While speaking about her illustrious career to the Banjo Newsletter in 2022, Roni Stoneman told a reporter about her upbringing…

[W]hen you grow up in it, and you hear it all your life, the music is just something you do. I don’t know what drives you, inside your soul, but it’s there! And it really drives you. It would drive me crazy not to play music

Roni Stoneman To Banjo Newsletter in 2022

Rest in peace, Roni Stoneman!!

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