Jimmy Dean dies at 81

jimmy-dean-getty.jpg Jimmy Dean, country music singer and sausage king, has died at the age of 81 in his Virginia home. Dean had one smash hit in 1961 with "Big Bad John," a song about a quiet, working-class miner who saves his colleagues in a cave-in but is himself lost. It won Dean a Grammy.

Dean was also on various television programs in the '50s and '60s, including "The Jimmy Dean Show," which started on CBS and then moved to ABC from 1963 to 1966. In 1969, he started the Jimmy Dean Meat Co. in his hometown, though the company was sold to Sara Lee Corp. in 1984, which famously dropped Dean as its spokesperson in 2003.