Charlie Wrestles Pancreatic Cancer


As Charlie Louvin turns 83 this July, he is discovering a new foe. He recently went in to see the doctor with what seemed to be a minor complaint, and came back with a diagnosis of stage 2 pancreatic cancer.

Suddenly, the success of his soon-to-be-released, new CD is not nearly as important as Charlie’s victory over one of the most virulent forms of cancer. He has been through a lot in his 83 years, but this hurdle is one he was not counting on.

On July 22nd, Charlie will go in for a complex, six hour surgery at the Vanderbilt Hospital in Nashville. It’s called the Whipple Procedure.

Charlie’s family and friends are encouraged that he will be in good hands, but they definitely covet your prayers.

Charlie’s Performance Schedule

Of course, Charlie won’t be able to perform for a few weeks after his surgery, but, being the resolute, tough guy that he is, he tentatively hopes he can be back on stage by August 21st, 2010.

92 Responses to “Charlie Wrestles Pancreatic Cancer”

  1. Red Rebel says:

    Charlie I have knowed you for over 33 years and if any one can beat your health problems you can. I know it gets you down at times but think positive . You know I was offal sick last year and I have come a long wayfrom last year so I know you can do it. I have the most respect for you and your family so if you want or need any help then don’t hesate to call. Love to all . RED REBEL

  2. Sharon Tranel says:

    Charlie, my thoughts and prayers are certainly with you at this difficult time. I have enjoyed seeing you so many times on the Opry and at fan fair. It’s artists like you that keep the country in country music. You and many other artists have paved the road for the new and upcoming artists that are trying to be the hits of today. Also, I have enjoyed all the country reunion shows that have been taped and will be enjoying my collection for years to come. Hang in there.

  3. J. L. "Rooster" Simpson says:

    I’ll be thinking / praying for you on July 22. I’ll have all my Family & friends, who are Christians,stand in for you and Pray. You know as well as I do, like your song, “There’s A Higher Power “! I met you at Vintage Vinyl, in St.Louis, in 2006. You took a break, and joined me outside, for a cigarette, while we talked about life, guitars, GOD, The Church, & the Holy Ghost, and Farming, all while looking at the City Sidewalk scenery. You are down to earth, a helluva singer, and are one of a tough breed of your kind! GOD has his Will, but JESUS, took healing stripes for you also!

    Best Of Wishes, “Rooster” Simpson-Jefferson County, Missouri

  4. J. L. "Rooster" Simpson says:

    I’ll be looking for you in St.Louis, in November, to see you perform, hope to get to chew the “fat” with you again!

    Also, heard you on the Opry, last Saturday night July 10th, by ways of AM650 WSM, in my car. You sounded great, and happy anniversary!

  5. Bernadette says:

    Hello Charlie
    I am so so sorry that this has happened to you. You will have a tough battle ahead, but i know God is watching over you,and he or she will keep you safe.
    I will say an Irish prayer for you.
    If you need an irish Nurse to help you when you get home, please do not hesitate to ask me.
    Bye for now


  6. Ed & Fran Anderson says:

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you Charlie.
    Ed & Fran
    Penn Yan NY

  7. David says:

    Just wanted to know I prayed for you this morning, and asked God for a miracle and to sustain you during this time.

  8. Daniel Upton says:

    Our prayers are with you. I am 59 years old. Seven years ago I was given the same prognosis of pancreatic cancer with a max of 3 – 6 months. I had a Whipple procedure done by a young Russian doctor which took 14 1/2 hours. I am now cancer free. It will be seven years in January. Bless you.

  9. Amy Rowell says:

    God Bless hope all goes well for you. You have brought so much joy and sheer belief to people in a daily struggle.

  10. Lisa says:

    I know you will beat this cancer with your positive outlook on life. My mother has been living with pancreatic cancer for six and a half years now. She hasn’t been eligible for the Whipple because of where her tumor is. However just yesterday we found out her tumor shrank 1 milimeter! Amazing! The good Lord will see to it that you will be in good hands. Prayers will lift your spirits and help with your healing. You will be in our prayers.

  11. Honkytonkitis says:

    Charlie, Godspeed to you during your illness and surgery. Look forward to hearing about your succesful surgery and release from the hospital. God Bless you! We will keep you and your family in our prayers. Sincerly, Honkytonkitis

  12. Roy Coffman says:

    Charlie, this old cowboy and old time country DJ has you in his prayers. I am looking forward to hearing good news about your surgery, and I am looking forward to seeing you back on that stage!

  13. Charlie, we will be prying for you as you go through this procedure and the following months. We truly love you. You were always so nice to us every time we stopped in to see you at your museum in Nashville, You always took the time to sign all our stuff, and shared many wonderful stories of your life with us. Those memories and your stories are priceless to us and we were so humbled that a legend like you would care enough about his fans to do that. You are one of the Greats and have continued to put out new music for your fans. Charlie, you fight this cancer, we want you to be around for many more years. We love you. Sheila and Ron Tavares

  14. Ed McCarthy says:

    Hi charlie; Last year I went through the same thing, I was devistated. I went through my operation at Mass General Hospital in Boston. I had my pancres removed along with other things. In the recovery room they told me they got it all. What good news it was. Here Iam a year and a half later doing fine and hopeing to last many more years by the way I am 71 years young.



  15. Naomi Johnson says:

    My thoughts and prayers are with you, Charlie. I expect God’s blessings will rain upon you as you fight this battle.

  16. Fred Sheely says:

    Charlie, I just found out about your battle with cancer. I remember when I was going in for a bone tumor operation and you sent me a tape of you singing so I went to sleep listening to you and if I didn’t wake up I’d leave this world listening to the greatest singer it was ever my honor to work for. My prayers are with you my friend. May God hold you in His Precious hand. Get well soon ,
    Love you,
    Fred Sheely from Indiana

  17. Dan Andrews says:

    I fell in love with your music many years ago as a young boy living in Madison TN watching you and your brother on The Louvin Brothers TV show. It was not until sometime later that I learned of your family’s impact on the history of country music, but I soon learned that I was not alone in my initial love of the Louvin Brother’s sound and writing.
    Now you are in a battle, but I know that the same God who inspired so many great inspirational tunes, will surround you with His Holy Spirit, and attend to your needs through the great medical team at Vanderbilt and good friends made through the years. Blessings in your treatments and recovery.

  18. Millie Brown says:

    Hang in there, my sister had this same surgery “Whipple” at St. Thomas about 6 weeks ago and is doing great. She is in stage 2b and is starting radiation and chemo. Doctors are great but they are not God. He is the only one who knows how much time we have on this earth.
    My thoughts and prayers are with you. Don’t give up!

  19. DebbieDoDa says:

    Many many thoughts and prayers for you today as you are in surgery. May the Lord work through the medical staff to bring you healing.
    With your attitude and spunk, expecting you’ll recover quickly — and maybe we’ll see you at the Haynes Reunion on Aug. 29th.
    Best to you & family,
    Debbie Gilbert from GA

  20. Pia Taavila says:

    Mr. Louvin, many of us here at the Sewanee Writers’ Conference have visited the Louvin Brothers display at Jim Oliver’s Smokehouse up at Monteagle. I came over to Wartrace for the benefit concert. All your fans are pulling for you, buddy. Hang in there and let us know how the surgery goes when you can.


  21. Angie S says:

    is there an update?

  22. Bruce Beck says:

    Mr. Louvin, I was fortunate to be at your “standing room only” show at the Walking Horse Hotel this week. Your 2 hour show was amazing! We are all praying for your speedy recovery & look forward to seeing you at the next big performance.
    Bruce Beck

  23. John McCrea says:

    Charlie, I just found out about this health condition of yours, and while I’m so sorry to hear it, I know that if anyone can kick this thing and get back into the race, it’s you. Stay young and strong and keep the faith!


    John McCrea

  24. Bella Q says:

    Wishing you a speedy and full recovery back to full health.
    Bella Q

  25. Bob Bates says:

    When I heard the news, my friend, I was devastated. But I have faith and I feel you will beat this. You will always be my friend. The months I performed with you on the Opry are still the greatest time of my life. I still perform your songs in my show. I’ll pray for you as you are my dear friend.

    Bob Bates from New York

  26. Scott Elwood says:

    Good luck my friend and keep a smile on your face and the faces of your fans!


  27. James Stanley says:

    Charlie your in our prayers the lord is on your side and all will be well i am looking forward to your new cd take my friend and god bless

  28. Stephen Helton says:

    Just wanted to say hello and you are in our prayers here at Grant AL

  29. gabriel nelson says:

    hey charlie , haven’t seen you since the cake tours a couple years back but wanted to say hello and send my wishes your way . you are one of my favorite musicians . i hope you are keeping yourself positive in the midst of all the trouble . there is an interesting film you may want to check out called ‘the gerson miracle ‘ . it is all about how diet can prevent and cure cancer . it isn’t popular with the medical industry because quite frankly it is bad for business , but a worthwhile film for certain . you are on the forefront of my thoughts , god bless you , g

  30. Ron Waters says:

    Just heard your telephone interview with my favorite country DJ, Bill Mac. Was not aware of your illness. You seem to have a great attitude considering what you are going through and that along with all our prayers is what you need. Good luck and think positive.

  31. Clint Crump says:

    I wish you well. In the early 1970s I worked at the Lonzo and Oscar Ranch House and you took your time to be a friend to me. You took me with you to the Ralph Emery show a couple of times and let me introduce you at some other things. I wasn’t an aspiring entertainer. Just a young man with a job. You took an interest in me that left a lifelong impression. Thank you. I have time to pray for you now. Thank you for all the years. I saw in you the better person that I have tried to be.

  32. MAE & JACK HILL says:


  33. Walt Michael says:

    Hi Charlie,

    Not sure if you remember me ….. we met about 1982 or so at Lincoln Center in NYC ….. I opened for you. We connected again later at an IBMA in Owensboro. You remain one of my great favorites of all time ….. I am thinking of you and wishing you good health and recovery.

    All the Best,

    Walt Michael

  34. Wanda Clark says:

    Hi, Charlie,
    I saw your picture today from the Midnight Jamboree. I’m so glad you got to be there and do what you love the best…sing and entertain everyone!!! I wish you all the very best for the future. You remain in my prayers and thoughts each day.
    Charlie, Thank you again for being my Special Friend and I will forever be so grateful to you, my Country Music Hero!! I pray you continue to get stronger each day and God will cleanse your body as we expect that miracle.
    Love and prayers to you and all the Family. WANDA CLARK, Mesquite, TX

  35. TERRY HAMPTON says:

    It was good to see you after 20 yers.
    You were there for me when I faced life head on,alone and scared.
    I remeber you calling me ,jennifer and sonny “the kids” at the Opry shows
    we always will be the best of friends,always in my thoughts and prayers
    and a part of this kid,the rest of my life.
    God bless you and keep you in his care always.
    Terry Wayne Hampton

  36. Aline Loudermilk Quenon says:

    Wishing you a speedy recovery! Love the songs you have written. My husband Ray and I loved meeting your mother and daddy in Henegar years ago, before we published our book, the “Descendants of George Washington Loudermilk,” your great, geat grandfather. Your daddy played the Jews Harp and one of the guitars that you had given him. Your mother pointed out the picture of you and Ira that hung on their living room wall.
    Aline Quenon

  37. DAVID FARMER says:

    Charlie,as a cancer survivor (3 years ) I certainly can identify with how you feel.God be with you.You have a lot of people praying for you and there is no doubt that God listens to all those prayers.Keep your faith and try to stay as positive as you have always been.

  38. Conley Robinson says:

    My family and I are praying for your recovery. I have been listening to your music all my life. My father introduced me to the Louvin Brothers when I was a kid in Tennessee. That was 50 years ago. I have one of your CD’s in my truck’s player and it always stays there. Your music never gets old, it only gets better with time. I pray God will be with you during this diffucult time. I have had the honor of meeting you a couple of times. Once on your old home place at Sand Mountain. And once here in San Diego a couple of years ago. Take care and keep looking to God for relief and your family and fans for support. You will always be one of the giants of country music. Thank you for the music. God Bless You.

  39. Tom Perlongo says:

    It is with great sadness to see you leave us Charlie. You have been a great inspiration to me & my music and will definitely be missed. May God keep you under his wing and keep your soul at rest forever more. – You were and will always be one of a kind.

    Rest in Peace.

    Tom Perlongo

    Milwaukee Wisc.

  40. Kellogg family says:

    We are at a loss for words. Our love of Charlie and Ira’s music crossed generations. We looked forward to seeing Charlie in December in Lincoln, Neb., and were saddened to learn why the concert had been canceled. Cancer is a beast. We can’t imagine anyone fighting harder than Charlie.

    But he is with his brother now. How we’d love to attend that joyful reunion! Keep making beautiful music, Charlie and Ira, and we’ll see you on the other side.

    The Kellogg family
    Lincoln, Neb.
    Corpus Christi, Texas

  41. De-an Bell says:

    What is there to say you were the greatest,You will be missed

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