Willie Nelson said Thursday that he will turn an upcoming Texas concert into a benefit for victims of the explosion at a fertilizer plant not far from where he grew up.
The country music icon still has a home in Abbott, Texas, about five miles north of West, which was rocked by the explosion Wednesday night that left an unknown number of people dead and more than 160 hurt. He still has many friends and family there.
“Our hearts and prayers go out to the people of West,” Nelson said in an interview before taping a CMT Crossroads special in Nashville. “There are a lot of our friends and loved ones and neighbors down there. We talked to some of them and some of them made it out OK, and some of them didn’t. But they’re strong and they’ll be back.”
The concert is scheduled for April 28 in Austin. It was scheduled as an 80th birthday celebration, but now will serve a dual purpose.
Throbbing wearing out Van Dyke
A spokesman for Dick Van Dyke said the actor is undergoing tests for “cranial throbbing” that’s causing him to lose sleep.
Spokesman Bob Palmer said Thursday the 87-year-old has been experiencing a throbbing sensation in his head when lying down. Palmer said scans and other tests have yet to yield a diagnosis. He said Van Dyke has a strong constitution and is otherwise OK, but the “fatigue factor has become acute.”
Palmer said that until Van Dyke receives a diagnosis and treatment plan, he’s been advised not to fly and is resting at his Malibu home.
Studi headed for hall of performers
Actor Wes Studi is set to become the second Native American inducted into the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum’s Hall of Great Western Performers in Oklahoma City. The Santa Fe New Mexican reported that the “Dances with Wolves” and “The Last of the Mohicans” star will be inducted Saturday with the late actor Robert Mitchum.
The Arroyo Hondo, N.M., resident is also known for his roles as the Apache leader in “Geronimo: An American Legend” and Navajo detective Joe Leaphorn in the made-for-TV movies based on mysteries by the late New Mexican writer Tony Hillerman.
The only other American Indian in the Hall of Great Western Performers is Jay Silverheels, a Canadian Mohawk First Nations actor known for playing Tonto in the 1950s television series “The Lone Ranger.”
The birthday bunch
Actor Hugh O’Brian is 88. Actress Elinor Donahue is 76. Actor Tim Curry is 67. Pop singer Mark “Flo” Volman is 66. Recording executive Suge Knight is 48. Actress Ashley Judd is 45. Actor James Franco is 35. Actress Kate Hudson is 34. Actor Hayden Christensen is 32. Tennis player Maria Sharapova is 26.