May 3, 2008 / 1:00 AM / 10 years ago

Country musician Jim Hager dies at 66

NASHVILLE, Tennessee (Reuters) - Jim Hager, who gained fame performing with his twin, Jon, on the nationally syndicated comedy and music television show “Hee Haw,” has died of a heart attack, a friend said.

Musicians Jim Hager, Roy Clark and Jon Hager arrive at the taping of the 5th Annual TV Land Awards in Santa Monica, California April 14, 2007. REUTERS/Max Morse

Hager, 66, slumped over on Thursday in the parking lot of a coffee house, according to family friend Adam Dread. He was pronounced dead at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Hager and his brother, natives of Chicago, won a management contract after performing at Disneyland in California. In 1969 they moved to “Hee Haw” in Nashville, where they became regulars on the show.

The duo also charted five country singles on Capitol Records.

“Hee Haw,” which ended in the 1990s, featured music and comedy skits performed by celebrities and country stars including Buck Owens and Roy Clark.

Reporting by Pat Harris; Editing by Andrew Stern and Xavier Briand

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