During the panel discussions at the 2013 CMA Fest, Nancy Jones, the wife of country veteran George Jones, recalls the last moments she shared with her husband before he went home to the Lord on April 26, 2013.
A few days before his death, George Jones laid in a hospital bed, suffering from complications from a respiratory infection, unable to speak. But just before he passed, as his wife was conferring with a doctor at his bedside, the country legend spoke.
"We were standing at the foot of the bed, and George just hadn't said nothing, and all of a sudden, he opened his eyes, and I was fixin' to go toward him, and the doctor kind of held me back, and George said, 'Well, hello there.' He said, 'I've been looking for you,'" Nancy Jones tells Nashville's Tennessean. "He said, 'My name's George Jones.'"
Within moments, the 81-year-old was gone.
"He closed his eyes, and that was the end of it," Nancy Jones explains. "So, in my heart, I know he was talking to God."
It's George Jones' wife who deserves much of the credit for his longevity. The Possum had a highly publicized battle with alcoholism, but she never wavered in her devotion to her spouse.
"God put me with him to help him get the devil out of him," she says. "God put me there to do a job, and I did it.
"God told me, 'If you leave him, he's going to die,'" Nancy Jones adds. "And I said, 'You know what - you're too good of a man to let go to hell, and I'm not gonna let you do it.'
"You have to throw every bit of love in your body to live with someone like that," she concludes