Phoenix remembers country music icon Glen Campbell

Glen Travis Campbell brought country music to new audiences. He announced he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 2011.

PHOENIX - Glen Campbell can't take credit for writing the lyrics to "By the Time I get to Phoenix," but it's a song that mirrors what's important in his life.

"What he found in Arizona was another family," says longtime friend and retired radio D.J. "W" Steven Martin.

It's easy for Martin to remember Campbell's years in the Valley because the mega-star always made it a point to stop by the station.

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"I would have my headphones on and Glen would walk in going, 'Good morning,'" Martin said.

Campbell's legend goes far beyond music -- he starred alongside John Wayne in the movie "True Grit," and even hosted a popular cable variety show for three years.

"History will show that Glen Campbell was one of the best of the best," Martin said.

Campbell's music was heard across the airwaves of many Phoenix radio stations on Tuesday night. 96.3 FM, "Arizona's Real Country," even held a paid tribute with a full hour of Glen Campbell programming.

Dozens of callers shared their thoughts on his music showing the impact he had on many in the Valley. Maybe his influence on them was secondary to the impact this state had on Campbell. Many people remember his stint in Tent City, serving a sentence for DUI. Those few weeks may seem like a low point to most outsiders, but Martin believes it was the best thing that could have happened.

"I talked to him shortly after that. The most important thing he said he learned while in jail was that 'I'm just a man,' Whatever they tried to do to bring him down, I believe it lifted him up. It helped helped him reorganize his life and career," Martin said.

A Hall of Fame career at that.

© 2017 KPNX-TV


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