In January 2021, Democrat state Representative John Mark Windle of Tennessee proposed a bill to create a statue in honor of Dolly Parton in Nashville, Tenn., per Billboard. The outlet reported that the statue would have been financed by gifts, grants and other donations. Nashville residents seemed on board, especially given Parton’s $1 million donation to Vanderbilt University Medical Center, which ultimately helped with the creation of a COVID-19 vaccine.
A petition with thousands of signatures asked Nashville to replace a statue of a Confederate officer with one of Parton who they deemed a “true Tennessee hero.” The Initiator of the petition, Alex Parsons, wrote “aside from her beautiful music, which has touched the hearts and lives of millions of Americans, Dolly Parton’s philanthropic heart has unquestionably changed the world for the better.”
However, if anyone knows Parton, they know the country singer is all but boastful about her charitable donations. When news broke that the singer’s $1 million donation toward COVID vaccine studies was the driving force behind the Moderna vaccine, Parton said on the TODAY show, “I’m just happy that anything I do can help somebody else.”
So, why is the star turning down the recognition in Nashville? It’s just not the time.
Dolly Parton hopes to have a statue in the future
In an Instagram statement posted on Feb. 18, 2021, Dolly Parton revealed she asked the Tennessee legislature to stop the process of considering a bill that would erect a statue of the singer on the state Capitol. “I am honored and humbled by their intention but I have asked the leaders of the state legislature to remove the bill from any and all consideration,” wrote Parton. The singer went on to say although she would love a statue in the future, now is just not the right time.
“Given all that is going on in the world, I don’t think putting me on a pedestal is appropriate at this time,” wrote the Grammy-award winning singer. “I hope, though, that somewhere down the road several years from now or perhaps after I’m gone if you still feel I deserve it, then I’m certain I will stand proud in our great State Capitol as a grateful Tennessean.”
The country singer closed her statement vowing, to “continue to try to do good work to make this great state proud.” It certainly seems like Tennessee is mighty proud of Parton already.
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