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June Carter Cash Hospitalized

Country legend ailing after heart surgery

May 12, 2003 12:00 AM ET

Country music legend June Carter Cash was hospitalized and listed in critical condition over the weekend after suffering complications from heart surgery last week. The seventy-three-year-old wife and musical partner of Johnny Cash had surgery on May 7th at Baptist Hospital in Nashville to replace a heart valve.

Cash asked all well-wishers to pray for his wife at 10 a.m. yesterday, something Carter Cash did for him when he was ailing two years ago. Cash himself was hospitalized as recently as March; he suffers from a disease of the nervous system that makes him susceptible to pneumonia.

June Carter Cash is the daughter of country pioneer Mother Maybelle Carter. She became Johnny Cash's partner in 1967, after writing one of his biggest hits, "Ring of Fire" (1963) -- a song about falling in love with Cash, who was married at the time. They married in 1968, and over the next thirty-five years Carter Cash did most of her singing with her husband. In 1999 she released a Grammy-winning recording of her own, Press On (recently reissued by Dualtone), her first solo album in twenty-five years. She recently recorded her third solo album, Wildwood Flower, which is scheduled for release on August 5th.

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