Remembering Ricky Nelson: The Funeral of a Music Icon

Ricky Nelson was an American singer and actor during the 1950s and 1960s. He was one of the first teenage idols to become famous, and he was loved by millions of fans all over the world. On December 31, 1985, the beloved star passed away in a tragic plane crash in De Kalb, Texas. His funeral was held just a few days later, in his hometown of Los Angeles.

The Funeral Service

Ricky Nelson’s funeral was held at the Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Los Angeles on January 5, 1986. Thousands of fans showed up to pay their respects to the fallen star, and many of them wore clothing that featured his iconic likeness. Inside the chapel, a variety of songs were played, including some of his own hits. The ceremony ended with a rendition of “Peace in the Valley” which was sung by his brother, David Nelson.

Celebrity Attendees

Ricky Nelson’s funeral was attended by a variety of celebrities, including his former co-stars from The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet. Other famous attendees included members of the Beach Boys, Kim Carnes and Michael Landon. Even President Ronald Reagan sent a letter to the family expressing his condolences.

The Aftermath

After the funeral, Ricky Nelson’s family released a statement thanking everyone for their love and support during this difficult time. They also thanked all of the celebrities who attended the service. In the months that followed, Ricky Nelson’s music continued to be popular, and many of his songs reached the top of the charts. His legacy continues to live on, and he will forever be remembered as a musical icon.


In the years since Ricky Nelson’s death, there have been several memorials and tributes to commemorate his life and legacy. In 1992, a star was dedicated to him on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. His hometown of Teaneck, New Jersey also dedicated a monument to him in 2002. Each year, his family also holds an annual concert in his honor at the Hollywood Bowl.


Ricky Nelson’s influence on music and culture continues to be felt to this day. He was one of the first teen idols to become famous, and his music continues to be popular with music fans of all ages. His death was a tragedy, but his legacy will continue to live on for generations to come.


Ricky Nelson’s funeral was a heartbreaking event, but it was also a celebration of his life and legacy. His music and influence will continue to be felt for many years to come, and his tribute concerts and memorials will ensure that his memory lives on. He will always be remembered as an icon of the music industry.