Today (Jan. 15) we remember Lynyrd Skynyrd frontman Ronnie Van Zant on his birthday. The singer would have been 71.
Gone too soon, we’ll always remember singer Ronnie Van Zant of Lynyrd Skynyrd. He was the older brother of founder and vocalist of 38 Special, Donnie Van Zant, and current Lynyrd Skynyrd lead vocalist Johnny Van Zant. We lost Ronnie in the terrible plane crash on Oct. 20, 1977 that also took the lives of bandmates Steve Gaines, Cassie Gaines, assistant road manager Dean Kilpatrick, pilot Walter McCreary, and co-pilot William Gray. Remaining band members survived, but all were seriously injured. Today Lynyrd Skynyrd continues to record and tour with brother Johnny Van Zant at the mic keeping Ronnie’s spirit alive. While I never got to see Ronnie with Lynyrd Skynyrd, I've seen the band many times over Johnny singing and band still rocks. One great show was the Lynyrd Skynyrd/Bad Company Tour back a few years ago when it played Bethel Woods in Bethel, NY (site of the 1969 Woodstock festival). We did a radio station bus trip for that one and it was wild. The beer was flowin as was the Jack Daniel’s. Everyone got hammered. It was a loud and rowdy bunch for sure but good times! Crank up some classic Skynyrd today in Ronnie's honor!