Circulating messages claim that country music legend Merle Haggard has died.
Sadly, the claims are true. Merle Haggard passed away on his birthday, April 6, 2016 at age 79. The news has been confirmed by many credible news and entertainment outlets. He died of complications related to pneumonia while at his home in Northern California. Merle Haggard recorded a string of country music hits over a long career that started in the 1960’s.
A CNN article about the star’s passing notes:
Haggard recorded more than three dozen No. 1 country hits in a musical career that spanned six decades, from the 1960s into the 2010s. He overcame an early life of petty crime and a prison term in San Quentin to develop a rugged, outlaw image that helped sell millions of records.
Tributes immediately began pouring in from the country music world and beyond.
You may ask why I have included this true story here? Because of the number of callous and nasty celebrity death hoaxes that circulate via social media, many people now tend to be doubtful when they see posts on their social media feeds announcing the death of a celebrity. This caution is warranted. Some of the false celebrity death stories are like-farming or survey scams. Others try to trick people into visiting clickbait websites or downloading malware.
But, in this case, the story is true. If a celebrity death report comes your way, you can easily confirm its veracity by searching a news portal such as Google News. If the celebrity really has died, his or her passing will be widely reported by legitimate news outlets.
Last updated: April 7, 2016
First published: April 7, 2016
By Brett M. Christensen