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Hawkshaw Hawkins


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Hawkshaw Hawkins (Harold Franklin Hawkins, Huntington, West Virginia, December 22, 1921 - March 5, 1963) was an American country music singer.
He was popular from the 1950s into the early 60s and known for his rich, smooth vocals and music drawn from blues, boogie and honky tonk. Hawkins died in the 1963, in the same plane crash that took the lives of Patsy Cline and Cowboy Copas. He was a member of the Grand Ole Opry and was married to country star Jean Shepard.

Harold Hawkins was born on December 22, 1921 in Huntington, West Virginia. He gained his nickname as a boy after helping a neighbor track down two missing fishing rods: the neighbor dubbed him “Hawkshaw” after the title character in the comic strip, Hawkshaw the Detective. He traded five trapped rabbits for his first guitar, and first performed on WCMI-AM in Ashland, Kentucky. At 16, he won a talent competition and a job on WSAZ-AM in Huntington, where he formed Hawkshaw and Sherlock with Clarence Jack. They moved to WCHS-AM in Charleston, West Virginia in the late 1930s. In 1940, at 19, he married Reva Mason Barbour, a 16-year-old from Huntington.
During 1941, Hawkins traveled the United States with a musical revue. He entered the US Army in 1943 during World War II, and served as an engineer stationed near Paris, Texas where he and friends performed at local clubs. As a staff sergeant, he was stationed in France and fought in the Battle of the Bulge, winning four battle stars during 15 months of combat. He was also stationed in Manila and performed there on the radio.


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