Guy Lewis Young

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Guy Lewis "Vern" Young, 95, of Lamar, MO, passed away on June 14, 2019. Vern, who had resided in Lamar, since 1989, had enjoyed a longtime career in the country/bluegrass music world.
Vern was born February 10, 1924, in Palmyra, NY, to Howard and Frances (Weeks) Young. He was reared by his grandparents, Fred and Carrie Young, in Palmyra.
He began his music career at the age of 15. Vern credited his music with bringing him all the good things in life since that time.
Vern performed in the Eastern states and Canada with his late wife, Anne Young, in the '40s and '50s. They did live radio shows in Rochester, NY, along with owning a record shop in Rochester, before they moved to Nashville, TN. In 1951, Vern joined Bill Monroe's bluegrass band for a short stint, but later that year he returned to Rochester where he became a regularly featured guest on Max Raney's TV show on WHAM TV, and Sparkey Gillen's weekly radio show on WHEC Radio, in Rochester. He hosted his own daily broadcast of recorded country music on SSAY, in Rochester.
After moving out west to Utah, Vern became an award-winning radio announcer on KSOP, the powerful voice of country music in Salt Lake City, UT.
After a few years, Vern left his radio career and graduated from the Utah Highway Patrol Academy, in Salt Lake City, and took a job as a deputy sheriff in Tooele County, UT. He later was a deputy sheriff in Virginia City, NV, and a marshal in Granby, CO.
After spending a short time back in radio work in the York, PA area, he returned to the Salt Lake City area where he began working for the federal government in security and later as an aircraft firefighter at Hill Air Force Base bombing range on the Great Salt Lake Desert.
It was after retiring and being invited to do a live concert at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City that Vern moved to Missouri and started booking his country/bluegrass band throughout the United States.
Some of Vern's music recognitions and awards include being inducted into "America's Old Time Country Hall of FameĀ”" in 2002. In October 2006, Vern was inducted into the New York State Country Music Hall of Honor, in Cortland, NY.
Vern also won the Midwest State Society for the Preservation of Bluegrass Music in America (SPBGMA) "Traditional Male Singer of the Year" award 11 years. He was nominated for the prestigious SPBGMA Award, in Nashville, by fans in 2000, 2001 and 2002.
Vern married Opal I. (Gardner) Sims on December 19, 1997, in Laughlin, NV. She survives of the home in Lamar, MO.
He is survived by four children, Steve Young and wife, Edie, of Rochester, Audie Young, of Rochester, Juanita Floyd, of Leesburg, VA, and Randy Young; four stepchildren, Nancy Trotter and Bradley Sims, both of Lamar, Kenneth Sims, of Nixa, MO, and Kimala Dodson, of Olathe, KS; several half-brothers and sisters; eight grandchildren, six great-grandchildren; and three great-great-grandchildren; and a very special friend, Joe Smith, of Lamar. Vern was preceded in death by a daughter, Michelle Openshaw; and a daughter-in-law, Ellen Young.
A funeral service will be held on Monday, June 17, at 7 p.m. at Konantz Warden Funeral Home, in Lamar. There will be a visitation before the service from 6 to 7 p.m. Interment, with a graveside service, will be at the Marion Cemetery, in Marion, NY on Thursday, June 20, at 10 a.m.
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Published on June 16, 2019
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