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Billy Ray Reynolds, 79, died November 29, 2019, at his home in Mt. Olive, Mississippi.
Visitation will be at Colonial Chapel Funeral Home in Mt. Olive on Friday evening,
December 6th, from 5-8pm, followed by services at Calvary Baptist Church of Mt. Olive
on Saturday, December 7th, beginning with a 1:00pm visitation, followed by funeral
services beginning at 2:00pm at the church. Burial will be at the church cemetery
immediately following the service.
He was born October 6, 1940, to Joseph Bernice Tew and Annie Ruth Ingram Tew Allen,
both of whom preceded him in death. He was also preceded in death by a son, Mike
Reynolds.
He is survived by his wife, Lora Reynolds, two brothers, Bobby Reynolds, and
J. B. Tew, five sons, Damon Reynolds, Carson McHale, Brian Reynolds, Jesse Reynolds,
and Cleburne Reynolds, along with seven grandchildren, and many close relatives, all of
whom he loved dearly. He also leaves behind his beloved pets, “Mac” and “Peaches.”
Billy Ray was a world renowned singer, songwriter, musician, producer, composer,
arranger, actor, writer, and historian, whose credits in the music and entertainment
industry are eclipsed only by his humility and thankfulness for having lived a life which
had its origins in such humble beginnings, and yet took him to so many places in the
world, and which gave him such a rare opportunity to share with the world his immense
talent as a creative artist.
Perhaps best known for his early years as rhythm guitarist for Waylon Jennings, and
playing session guitar and singing harmony on some of the most iconic records Waylon
ever produced, Billy Ray’s true love was as an award winning songwriter, with songs
recorded by recording artists that included Waylon, as well as Johnny Cash, Tanya
Tucker, John Conlee, Toby Keith, Tompall Glaser, Eddy Arnold, Tom Jones, Jake Owen,
Conway Twitty, Bobby Bare, Dickey Betts, and many other top artists that spanned over
three decades in Nashville. He also played guitar and was vocalist for the legendary
steel guitarist, Pete Drake, and for many years was signed to Drake’s publishing
company, Window Music, which he helped manage. But perhaps his proudest
accomplishment in music was in helping others achieve their dreams by forging so many
professional relationships and friendships among those in the music industry.
His versatility as an actor landed him multiple roles in the television and the film industry,
and he served several years as the President of the Screen Actors Guild for Tennessee
and Kentucky. His last movie role was in the screen adaptation of William Faulkner’s “As
I Lay Dying” which was released in 2013.
In 2006, after having moved back to his beloved hometown, he met the love of his life,
Lora Reynolds, at the Frank Brown Songwriters Festival near her home in Pensacola.
They soon married, and began a collaboration that allowed them to write and produce
their original country and spiritual songs to audiences from Nashville to Key West, and
along the way, provide true meaning to their duet album’s title cut, “Country Music Love
Affair.”
Special thanks to the medical staff at West Hattiesburg Dialysis Center, for the loving
care provided him.
His versatility as an actor landed him multiple roles in the television and the film industry, and he served several years as the President of the Screen Actors Guild for Tennessee and Kentucky.  His last movie role was in the screen adaptation of William Faulkner’s “As I Lay 
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the National Kidney
Foundation, or to the church or charity of choice.
  • Colonial Chapel Funeral Home Magee, MS

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