- Name: Merle Haggard
- Age at Death: 79 years old
- Height: 5ft 9in (176 cm)
- Occupation: Musician
- Net Worth: US $40 Million
- Status: Deceased
Merle Ronald Haggard was an American country music singer, songwriter and guitarist. He was born to parents Flossie Mae and James Francis on April 6, 1937 in Oildale, California. He grew up in the Depression-era living from a boxcar that was remodeled into a home. Haggard lost his father to stroke in 1945. His mother was forced to work as a bookkeeper to make ends meet. With no father figure around, Haggard got caught up in a life of crime and before long found himself in jail. In 1958, he was sentenced to 2.5 years in San Quentin prison. He was released on parole in 1960 and was officially pardoned by then governor of California ‘Ronald Reagan’ in 1972.
Haggard moved to Las Vegas where he played the bass guitar for Wynn Stewart. He signed with Tally Records in 1962 and released his debut single “Sing a Sad Song” that same year. The song peaked at #19 on the U.S. country chart. Haggard formed his back-up band, the Strangers, in 1965. He signed with Capitol Records and release his debut studio album, Strangers, in 1965. His second album, Swinging Doors, was released in 1966 atop of the Billboard country chart. Haggard has released 38 number one hits from 1966-1987. His first hit single was “I’m a Lonesome Fugitive (1966)” followed by “Branded Man (1967)”. His signature song “Okie from Muskogee” was awarded Single of the Year in 1969.
Haggard has released 47 studio albums, 8 live albums, 23 compilation albums, 13 music videos and 82 singles. Popular albums include The Fightin’ Side of Me (1970), If We Make It Through December (1974), and more recently If I Could Fly (2000) and Haggard Like Never Before (2003). He collaborated with Willie Nelson on the 1983 album, Pancho & Lefty. The album picked up an RIAA certification of Gold in Canada and Platinum in the United States. Haggard was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1977. He was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1994 and the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame in 1997.
Merle Haggard died on April 6, 2016, on his 79th birthday. His reported cause of death was complications from pneumonia. He was successfully treated for the infection in December 2015 but it returned in March 2016. He passed away at his home in Palo Cedro, California. Haggard was 5ft 9in tall and had a net worth of $40 million. He was married five times to wives, Leona Hobbs, Bonnie Owens, Leona Williams, Debbie Parret and Theresa Ann Lane. He’s survived by fifth wife, Theresa, and his six children, Dana, Marty, Kelli, Noel, Ben and Jenessa.
Merle Haggard Age, Birthday, Married
- Birth Name: Merle Ronald Haggard
- Birthday: April 6, 1937
- Place of Birth: Oildale, California, United States
- Zodiac Sign: Aries
- How Tall : Height: 5ft 9in (176 cm)
- Occupation: Guitarist, Singer, Songwriter
- Years Active: 1963-2016
- Net Worth : Salary: US $40 Million
- Marriage(s): Leona Hobbs, Bonnie Owens, Leona Belle Williams, Debbie Parret, Theresa Ann Lane
- Death-O-Meter: Dead
- Died: April 6, 2016
- Cause of Death: Pneumonia
- Place of Death: Palo Cedro, California, U.S.
- Official Site: merlehaggard.com