The Times West Virginian

West Virginia

March 8, 2014

‘Take Me Home, Country Roads’ one of state’s official songs

Legislature approves resolution designating John Denver’s ’70s hit as one of four recognized

CHARLESTON — Singer John Denver never called West Virginia home, but his 1970s hit “Take Me Home, Country Roads” is one of the state’s official songs.

Forty-three years after it first hit the airwaves with the words “Almost Heaven, West Virginia,” the Legislature approved a resolution Friday designating it as one of four state songs.

The song has resonated with residents for decades. It’s played after every West Virginia University basketball and football game. Denver sang it in person at the dedication of Mountaineer Field in Morgantown in 1980.

The state song effort was started two years ago by the widow of “Gilligan’s Island” actor Bob Denver, who is no relation.

A Bluefield native, Dreama Denver said she got the idea after playing the song on her morning radio show in Princeton and a caller wanted to know if it was an official state song.

After doing some research, she learned it wasn’t. She contacted Raleigh County Delegate Marty Gearhart, who got the ball rolling at last year’s regular session. The resolution passed the House of Delegates in 2013 but never made it through the Senate.

This year, it did.

“My heart has been pounding all day,” Dreama Denver said.

She said she’s heard countless stories about the song from residents, including a man who recently told her, “This is not a song. It’s an anthem.”

“The entire world knows us with this song,” she said.

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin said he was part of a state trade mission to Taiwan several years ago. A nightclub at a hotel where he was staying was playing waltzes, but as soon as Tomblin and other members of his party entered, John Denver’s song started playing.

“I’m very proud that ‘Take Me Home, Country Roads’ finds a new home among our beloved official state songs,” Tomblin said at a state Capitol ceremony.

West Virginia has three other official state songs: “West Virginia Hills,” “This Is My West Virginia” and “West Virginia, My Home Sweet Home.”

1
Text Only
West Virginia
  • Repairs set for I-77 tunnel

    Some lanes of an Interstate 77 tunnel along the Virginia-West Virginia border where a truck fire occurred are being rerouted for repairs.

    July 29, 2014

  • Veterans crisis center coming to Clarksburg

    The long delays for veterans seeking medical care at VA hospitals have prompted The American Legion to plan a short-term crisis center in Clarksburg.

    July 29, 2014

  • Weekend tornado confirmed in West Virginia

    The National Weather Service has confirmed a tornado touched down in Pleasants and Ritchie counties over the weekend.

    July 29, 2014

  • Rahal: Fund VA reform ‘for our veterans’

     On the cusp of Congress’s lengthy summer break, factions sparring over legislation to strengthen health care and funding reforms for the Department of Veterans Affairs may have reached a compromise.
    Although final details are still in the works, the top two negotiators, Sen. Bernard Sanders, I-Vt., and Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla., released a joint statement that said they had “made significant progress toward and agreement on legislation to make VA more accountable and to help the department recruit more doctors, nurses and other health-care professionals.”

    July 29, 2014

  • Attorney general reaches $950,000 settlement with three financial groups

    West Virginia’s attorney general has reached a $950,000 settlement with three companies over allegations of antitrust law violations.

    July 28, 2014

  • Woman convicted in teen’s slaying moved

    A Monongalia County teenager has been transferred to a state prison to complete her sentence for the slaying of another teenager.
    The Lakin Correctional Center near Point Pleasant said Friday Rachel Shoaf has been booked at the Division of Corrections prison. Shoaf turned 18 last month and had been held in a juvenile facility.

    July 26, 2014

  • Board suspends clinic operator’s license

    A West Virginia board Friday suspended the license of the operator of a pain management clinic where investigators found syringes were being reused. It was the second disciplinary action involving the doctor’s license within a decade.

    July 26, 2014

  • Candidates: Leave global warming debate to scientists

    Two West Virginia congressional hopefuls said during their first candidate forum matchup Thursday that the global warming debate is better left to scientists.
    Democrat Nick Casey and Republican Alex Mooney added that other countries should step up in reducing carbon emissions.

    July 24, 2014

  • Lawsuit filed over Dirty Girl Mud Run

    A lawsuit has been filed against the producers of a run that was canceled in Charleston in which participants were told they wouldn’t be issued refunds.

    July 24, 2014

  • WVa. man sues GM over wife's death

    A West Virginia man has filed a lawsuit against General Motors Corp., claiming a defective ignition switch in a Chevrolet Cobalt caused a 2006 accident that killed his pregnant wife.

    July 24, 2014

House Ads
Featured Ads