With a career spanning 60 years and still going strong, over 100 millions albums sold worldwide, and even her own theme park, Dolly Parton is in a class of her own. Sporting her big hair and shiny costumes, Parton is one of music’s most recognizable figures, and her iconic songs have become standards that will be played for generations.
She is the consummate entertainer, but her life story is also an inspiring one. Going from her humble origins to superstardom, from struggling to giving back with her philanthropy, let’s take a look at the life of the singer, songwriter, actor, entrepreneur, and humanitarian whose heart is as big as her massive success.
3A Devoted Sister
Dolly Parton’s role in her household went beyond the usual duties of a kid. With so many other children, Dolly’s mother assigned the new ones to her older children. “My mother, through the years, when we were born, since there were so many of us, used to say, ‘This one’s gonna be your baby,’” Parton explained. “That just meant that you got to take care of it.”
Dolly was a loving sister, and she fulfilled her duties. “You have got to get up with it at night and rock it back and forth,” she said about the baby children, and she put in her best effort. When she was only nine years old, tragedy struck her family when her brother Larry died only four days after his birth. “There is a lot of heartache and stuff that goes on with that,” Parton said.