Holly Dunn, age 59, walked off into a beautiful southwestern sunset hand in hand with her Lord and Savior on November 14, 2016. Dunn was born on August 22, 1957 to Yvonne Katherine Campbell Dunn and Franklin Jerome Dunn, Sr. in San Antonio, TX. Holly had been battling a rare form of ovarian cancer since February 2016.
This native of San Antonio, Texas burst onto the country music scene in the mid-1980s, with a self-penned tribute to her preacher father called “Daddy’s Hands”. The song earned Holly’s first two Grammy award nominations and set her off on a whirlwind career. Over the course of the next 20+ years, Holly racked up three Grammy award nods, the Academy of Country Music’s “New Female Vocalist” award (1986) and the Country Music Association’s “Horizon Award.” (1987) in 1989 Holly was inducted into the famed Grand Ole Opry cast and also awarded “Songwriter of the Year” by BMI.
Along the way, Holly hosted her own radio show on WWWW in Detroit, Michigan (1997), and for two years (1998-2000) was host of TNN’s “Opry Backstage” weekly television show.
Holly toured the world extensively throughout her career. She recorded 10 albums, and achieved at least top ten status for 14 of her singles, reaching the coveted number one spot four times. “Milestones,” her greatest hits package, was certified gold shortly after release in 1991.
Holly’s talents did not begin and end with music. Because her mother was a talented oil painter, Holly grew up with a natural love and talent for making fine art as well. To that end, in 2003 Holly kept a long standing promise to herself and walked away from the music business to pursue her passion for art.
She joked in interviews throughout the years that she only made music to pay for her art supplies. Holly worked in pastel and mixed media with her favorite subjects being the icons and architecture of the great Southwest.
Holly will be celebrated on Friday with visitation at Dossman Funeral Home in Belton, TX from 5-7 PM. Her celebration of her life will be at 1 PM on Saturday at Salado United Methodist church in Salado TX with burial following at the Salado cemetery.
She is survived by her spouse, Dr. Melissa L. (Missy) Taylor; her three brothers, Dr. Franklin Jerome Dunn, Jr. and wife Connie of Irving, TX, Rodney Paul Dunn of Temple, TX, Christopher Waters Dunn and wife Nissa of San Antonio, TX; and numerous loving nieces and nephews and a lifetime of friends and friends that are family.
In lieu of flowers please send donations in Holly’s name to the GSC Foundation. The link provides direct access to make donations to Mass General Hospital that has taken up the worthy cause of finding a cure for ovarian carcinosarcoma.