Music Memorial Sites | Flickr / Creative Commons / Maxiub

Ben Dorcy Obituary

5/19/1925 - 9/16/2017| Visit Guest Book
Ben Dorcy (Photo via Facebook)
Ben Dorcy (Photo via Facebook)
“Anything you say about Ben — as wild as it was — you don’t have to make up, because it actually happened,” country singer Johnny Bush told the crew of the documentary “Lovey: King of the Roadies.”

The subject of that documentary was Ben Dorcy III, whose death at the age of 92, was announced Saturday, Sept. 16, 2017, on Willie Nelson’s Facebook page.

Click to get weekly celebrity death news delivered to your inbox.

Dorcy basically invented the job of roadie. When he started touring with musicians in 1950, he was simply called the bandboy. He would set up equipment, keep wardrobes in order, make late-night food runs, and acquire whatever else the musicians needed to keep the show on the road.

These weren’t just any musicians, they were all-time greats like Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Frank Sinatra, and Patsy Cline. Before he became the original roadie, he was John Wayne’s valet in Hollywood. He was a legend among legends, and inspired songs like Waylon Jennings’ “Ode to Ben Dorcy,” and Red Sovine’s “Big Ben Dorcy the Third.”

Although he slowed down, he continued to go out on tour into his final years. His longevity spoke not just his abilities as a roadie, but to his personality — one that earned him the affectionate nickname “Lovey.”

He was a dear friend of Willie Nelson, whose daughter, Amy Nelson, and grand-nephew, Trevor Doyle Nelson, produced the feature-length documentary, “Lovey: King of the Roadies” (2017).

“He has no living relatives, yet he is the patriarch of a family of artists, and fellow roadies who love him dearly,” Amy Nelson told Rolling Stone in 2015.

In 2009 Dorcy became the first member inducted into the Roadie Hall of Fame.
Read Full Obituary for Ben Dorcy

Guest Book Highlights

If you need help finding the right words, view our Suggested Entries

Other obituaries

Published online on September 16, 2017 courtesy of
Ben Dorcy, legendary country music roadie, died Saturday, Sept. 16, 2017, according to a post on Willie Nelson's Facebook page. He was 92. For full obituary and coverage from, click here . Read Obituary

Search Memorials


About This Site: Music Memorials

The Music Memorial Site includes obituaries and Guest Books from the network of newspaper and funeral home affiliates.