Country songwriter and manager MERLE KILGORE is scheduled to have quadruple-bypass heart surgery today (17MAY04) to clear four blocked arteries.

He learned he had a heart problem while being tested for severe back pain; he's also dealing with a collapsed lumbar vertebra.

Kilgore says that after his heart surgery, he'll have to wear a back brace for 12 weeks.

Kilgore wrote RING OF FIRE, one of the late Johnny Cash's signature songs. He also manages Hank Williams Jr and is a member of the NASHVILLE SONGWRITERS ASSOCIATION INTERNATIONAL HALL OF FAME.

18/05/2004 21:02