SMITHVILLE – The late country music star Rod Brasfield, a regular at the Grand Ole Opry, was recently honored with a marker on the Mississippi Country Music Trail. The marker is located at the Rod Brasfield Memorial Park, located at 60001 Franklin Street in Smithville.
Brasfield was the Grand Ole Opry’s top male comedian from 1947-1958, a beloved sad sack foil for Red Foley and Hank Williams, and a comic sparring partner for Minnie Pearl and June Carter. He played dramatic and comic roles in traveling tent shows before his Opry fame and appeared as Andy Griffith’s sidekick in the Hollywood drama “A Face in the Crowd.”
Born Rodney Leon Brasfield, Brasfield was born in Smithville on Aug. 22, 1910, into a theatrical family. A heart condition, exacerbated by alcohol addiction, caused Brasfield’s sudden death on Sept. 12, 1958, at age 48; he was buried in Smithville.
Brasfield was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1987. A replica of his Hall of Fame plaque was presented to the people of Smithville and placed in the town hall.