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Patsy Cline Biography

Birth Name:
Virginia Patterson Hensley
Birth Place:
Winchester, Virginia, United States

Fast Facts

  • Suffered from rheumatic fever at age 13, and discovered after her recovery that she had developed a tremendous singing voice
  • Dropped out of school at 15 to help support her family, working as a soda jerk and at a Greyhound bus station
  • Signed her first record contract with Four Star Records in 1954 but continued to struggle, singing in juke joints and bars
  • Got her big break when she won a televised talent contest hosted by Arthur Godfrey in 1957
  • Was initially hesitant to record the song "I Fall to Pieces," which incorporated a new, more heavily orchestrated Nashville sound
  • Was involved in a serious car accident in 1961 that left her with a visible scar on her forehead, which she would cover with wigs during public appearances
  • Was killed when the plane she was taking home from a concert in Kansas City, piloted by her manager Randy Hughes, crashed during inclement weather conditions in a forest outside of Camden, Tennessee
  • Her longtime family home in Winchester, Virginia, remains open to the public, cared for by a non-profit group called Celebrating Patsy Cline, and has become a destination for tourists and fans


  • Sam Hensley -- Brother
  • Julia Simadore Dick -- Daughter
  • Gerald Cline -- Ex-husband
  • Samuel Lawrence Hensley -- Father
  • Randolph Hensley -- Half Brother
  • Tempie Glenn Hensley -- Half Sister
  • Charlie Dick -- Husband
  • Hilda Hensley -- Mother
  • Sylvia Mae Hensley -- Sister
  • Allen Randolph Dick -- Son