Jimmy Dean Of Sausage, Song Fame, Dead at 81

  • June 14, 2010
Country music star and sausage entrepreneur Jimmy Dean, 81, died on June 13 at his home near Richmond, Va. 

Dean's wife, Donna Meade Dean, told Associated Press that the death was sudden -- that Dean collapsed while eating a meal in front of the television.

Best known for his hit "Big Bad John" and his mid-1960's variety television show, Dean founded Jimmy Dean Sausage in 1969 and sold the company to Sara Lee Corp. in 1984.

Sara Lee, which stopped using Dean as the sausage brand's active spokesperson in 2004, issued a statement from VP, breakfast and snacking Daryl Gormley, extending sympathies to Dean's family and fans at the loss of "an iconic figure" who "will be missed by millions."

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