Southern gospel singer Peg Bean of The McKameys dead at 85

Southern gospel artist Peg McKamey Bean of The McKameys died Wednesday, several weeks after suffering a stroke. She was 85.

>> Read more trending news

Bean suffered a stroke on Dec. 11, WBIR-TV reported.

The singer, who helped found the East Tennessee family group of singers and musicians, performed for nearly seven decades, according to WATE-TV. Her death was announced in a Facebook post on Tuesday by the group.

“We want to let everyone know that early this morning Ms. Peg went home to be with her Lord and is now in the presence of The One she sang about for so long,” the family wrote. “Please continue praying for our family.”

The McKameys are based out of Clinton, Tennessee, just northwest of Knoxville. They are noted for their performance of gospel songs like “I Have a Home” and “I Made It By Grace,” WBIR reported.

Bean founded the group in 1954 with her sisters, Carol and Dora, according to WATE. They added guitarist Ruben Bean in 1957, who married Peg on June 29, 1959.

The group eventually took on more family members as it performed across North America, with Bean singing and waving her white handkerchief during performances.

The McKameys played approximately 130 days a year and performed regularly at Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, WVLT-TV reported.

The group retired from full-time touring in November 2019, according to WATE.

Two years later, Peg Bean’s daughter, Connie Fortner, formed the McKamey Legacy, the television station reported. She performs with her husband, Roger Fortner, and their son, Elijah Fortner, WATE reported.

Peg Bean was inducted into the Southern Gospel Music Association Hall Of Fame in 2016.

“If you have been around Southern Gospel Music for very long, you know when Peg takes the stage with her white hanky, God is going to be honored,” SGMA President Arthur Rice said.

Comments on this article