|Dale was born Frances Octavia Smith, October 31, 1912 in Uvalde, Texas, a place of birth that would be quite significant later in her career.
At age fourteen, Dale eloped with her high school sweetheart. A year later, she found herself in Memphis, Tennessee a single parent, pursuing a career in a field she had always loved, music! She landed a job with local radio stations (WMC and WREC, for all you trivia buffs) singing and playing piano. A brief stint at radio station WHAS as staff singer proved a landmark event as it was here she became Dale Evans. Initially, she used her married name; Frances Fox then changed to Marian Lee. Marian Lee was rather like a "Nom de Song" used by young singers just getting started. The station manager, a man by the name of Joe Eaton, thought the name trite and trendy. He informed her that he was changing her name to Dale. She protested that this was a boy's name but he told her of a beautiful actress of the silent film era whom he had admired named Dale Winter. He wanted her to have the name in honor of her. The surname, Evans, came about as Joe Eaton felt it was "euphonious" and would roll easily from the lips of announcers.
As Dale Evans, she ultimately reached Chicago, home of great music and talented bands. She became a vocalist with a number of different "big bands" and was featured soloist in such notable hotels as the Blackstone (Balinese Room), the Sherman (Panther Room, along with jazz legend, Fats Waller), the Drake (Camellia Room) and the Chez Paree Supper Club. Anson Weeks hired her as vocalist for his orchestra just as they began a major tour to the West Coast. After a two-month stand at The Coconut Grove, Dale left the Orchestra and returned to Chicago where she was hired as staff singer for radio station WBBM, the local CBS affiliate.
Talent scouts from Paramount Studios discovered her and arranged a screen. test in Hollywood for the movie, Holiday Inn, starring Fred Astaire and Bing Crosby. Dale's dancing wasn't quite up to Astaire's, so she didn't get the part. Her agent, however, showed her screen test to 20th Century Fox studios where she received a one-year contract. This resulted in only small parts in two pictures, (Orchestra Wives) and (Girl Trouble). Dale then signed with the top ranked "Chase and Sanborn Show" which was broadcast nationwide. Featured as regulars with Dale were Don Ameche, Jimmy Durante, Edgar Bergen (Candice Bergen's father) and Charlie McCarthy. Weekly guests read like a Who's Who of the entertainment industry. This exposure caused Republic Studios to sign her to a one-picture contract (Swing Your Partner) with a one-year option. The option was exercised and she was cast in several contemporary movies and one John Wayne western in which her singing was featured.
Herbert Yates, head of Republic Studios was inspired by the successful stage play, Oklahoma, and decided to expand the female lead in westerns and adopt this format for one of his biggest stars, Roy Rogers. Dale, he reasoned, had a large following and reputation as a singer and, being from Texas, could surely ride n rope. His reasoning proved correct on the former but somewhat suspect on the latter. Nevertheless, history was made and destiny seemingly fulfilled in 1944 with release of (The Cowboy and The Senorita), the first of 28 films they would make together.
This on-screen team became an off-screen team on New Year's Eve, 1947. They were married on the Flying L Ranch in Davis, Oklahoma, where they had just completed filming (Home in Oklahoma). The owner of the ranch, when he learned they were to be married, offered the ranch as a wedding site. An instant family was formed. Dale had her son, Tom, and Roy had an adopted daughter, Cheryl, and birth children Linda Lou "Dusty", from his first wife, Arlene, who had died after Dusty's birth. Roy and Dale had one child together, Robin, whose death from complications associated with Downs syndrome inspired Dale's classic book, Angel Unaware. The family swelled with the addition of Mary Little Doe (Dodie), of Native American heritage: John David (Sandy), a battered child from an orphanage in Kentucky; Marion (Mimi), their foster child from Scotland; and Debbie, a Korean War orphan whose father was a G.I. of Puerto Rican ancestry. The family lost three of the children tragically: Robin (as mentioned above), Debbie, in a church bus accident when she was twelve, and Sandy of an accidental death while serving with the military in Germany.
In 1950, Roy and Dale developed their own production company and began producing their half-hour television series, "The Roy Rogers Show", that ran until 1957. These episodes have been translated into every major language and, at any given time, are likely being shown somewhere in the world. The same is true of their movies. They have set appearance records in virtually every major arena in the world, including Madison Square Garden in New York City, the Houston Fat Stock Show, Los Angeles Coliseum, Chicago Stadium, Harringay Arena in London, Toronto's Canadian National Exhibition, and many state fairs and rodeos.
Among the many honors of which Dale was most proud are: California Mother of the Year (1967); The Texas Press Association's Texan of the Year (1970); Cowgirl Hall of Fame (1995); Cardinal Terrence Cook Humanities Award (1995); and her three stars on The Hollywood Walk of Fame. Full retirement proved an elusive concept for Dale, as she and Roy were as visible as ever, despite accepting only an extremely limited number of engagements. Dale continued as a best selling author and always seemed to have at least one book in development. There was also her weekly television show A Date With Dale for Trinity Broadcast Network. It, too, was translated into all the major languages and shown worldwide.
And then there was The Roy Rogers-Dale Evans Museum in Apple Valley, Victorville, California, and Branson, Missouri. It vividly chronicled their lives, and the values and ethics that represented the basis of their worldwide appeal. Her "quality time" was spent as matriarch to a small nation of fifteen grandchildren, 30+ great-grandchildren.
Every cowboy had a theme song. A song heard as the dust settled and heros drifted west towards the sinking sun. Some were better than others, but few were as good as "Happy Trails."
The Story Behind "Happy Trails"
"Happy Trails" was written by Dale Evans in 1950, while preparing for a radio show. Dale decided Roy needed a theme song and since he penned all his autographs with "Trails of Happiness" or "Happy Trails, Roy Rogers", the title came easily.
Scribbling on an envelope, Dale wrote the famous lyrics and taught the medley to Roy and the Sons of the Pioneers forty minutes before show time.
What came across the radio that night gave America's favorite singing cowboy a theme song and a nation a lifetime of inspiration.
Dale wrote many heartwarmin' and inspirin' books of life, love for her family and God. Here is a list of Dale Evans - Rogers many books.
by Dale Evans
Happy trails to you, until we meet again.
Happy trails to you, keep smilin' until then.
Who cares about the clouds when we're together?
Just sing a song and bring the sunny weather.
Happy trails to you, 'till we meet again.
Some trails are happy ones,
Others are blue.
It's the way you ride the trail that counts,
Here's a happy one for you.
Happy trails to you, until we meet again.
Happy trails to you, keep smilin' until then.
Who cares about the clouds when we're together?
Just sing a song and bring the sunny weather.
Happy trails to you, 'till we meet again.
Alternate Religious Verse:
Happy trails to you, it's great to say "hello".
And to share with you the trail we've come to know.
It started on the day that we met Jesus,
He came into our hearts and then he freed us.
For a life that's true, a happy trail to you.
1. Angel Unaware - 1953
2. My Spiritual Diary - 1955
3. Prayers for Children - 1956
4. To My Son, Faith in Our House - 1957
5. Christmas Is Always - 1958
6. No Two Ways About It - 1963
7. Dearest Debbie -1965
8. Time out Ladies - 1966
9. Salute to Sandy - 1967
10. God Has the Answers - 1969
11. The Woman at the Well - 1970
12. Dale: My Personal Picture Album - 1971
13. Cool It or Lose It - 1972
14. Where He Leads - 1974
15. Let Freedom Ring - 1975
16. Trials, Tears and Triumph - 1977
17. Hear the Children Crying: The Child Abuse Epidemic - 1978
18. Women - 1980
19. Happy Trails: Our Life Story
20. Let Us Love - 1982
21. Grandparents Can - 1983
22. God in the Hard Times - 1984
23. The Home Stetch - 1986
24. Only One Star - 1988
25. In the Hands of the Potter - 1994
26. Say Yes to Tomorrow - 1994
27. Our Values - 1997
28. Rainbow on a Hard Trail -1999
The followin' are multible books and or writin's from Dale Evans Rogers.
*Angel Unaware, Dearest Debbie, Salute to Sandy: Three Best Sellers Complete in One Volume
*Finding the Way: Selections from the Writings of Dale Evans Rogers - 1973
*Life Is a Blessing - 2000 _ A Heartfelt Collection of Three Bestselling Works Complete in One Volume.
Roy Rogers has written in some of these books along with Dale. Both Roy and Dale have written forewards in many other books.
Dale appeared in motion pictures, TV shows, and appeared on many different programs as a guest star. I've cataloged the different appearances that I could find.
(1940s) (1950s) (1960s) (1970s) (1990s)
1. Orchestra Wives (1942) (uncredited) .... Hazel, Girl at soda fountain
2.Girl Trouble (1942) .... Ruth
3. Swing Your Partner (1943)
4. West Side Kid (1943) .... Gloria Winston
5. Hoosier Holiday (1943) .... Dale Fairchild
... aka Farmyard Follies (UK)
6. Here Comes Elmer (1943) .... Jean Foster
7. In Old Oklahoma (1943) .... Cuddles Walker [dance-hall singer] .... aka
War of the Wildcats (USA: reissue title)
8. Casanova in Burlesque (1944) .... Barbara Compton
9. Cowboy and the Senorita (1944) .... Ysobel Martinez
10. The Yellow Rose of Texas (1944) .... Betty Weston
11. Song of Nevada (1944) .... Jennie Barrabee
12. San Fernando Valley (1944) .... Dale Kenyon
13. Lights of Old Santa Fe (1944) .... Marjorie Brooks
14. The Big Show-Off (1945) .... June Mayfield, Night Club Singer
15. Utah (1945) .... Dorothy Bryant
16. Bells of Rosarita (1945) .... Sue Farnum
17. The Man from Oklahoma (1945) .... Peggy Lane
18. Hitchhike to Happiness (1945) .... Alice Chase
19. Along the Navajo Trail (1945) .... Lorry Alastair
20. Sunset in El Dorado (1945) .... Lucille Wiley/Kansas Kate
21. Don't Fence Me In (1945) .... Reporter Toni Ames
22. Song of Arizona (1946) .... Clare Summers
23. Rainbow Over Texas (1946) .... Jackie Dalrymple, posing as Jackie Larkin
24. My Pal Trigger (1946) .... Susan Kendrick
25. Under Nevada Skies (1946) .... Helen Williams
26. Roll on Texas Moon (1946) .... Jill Delaney
27. Home in Oklahoma (1946) .... Connie Edwards
28. Out California Way (1946) .... Dale Evans
29. Heldorado (1946) .... Carol Randall ... aka Helldorado
30. Apache Rose (1947) .... Billie Colby
31. Bells of San Angelo (1947) .... Lee Madison
32. The Trespasser (1947) .... Linda Coleman
33. Slippy McGee (1948) .... Mary Hunter
34. Susanna Pass (1949) .... Kay 'Doc' Parker
35. Down Dakota Way (1949) .... Ruth Shaw
36. The Golden Stallion (1949) .... Stormy Billings
37. Bells of Coronado (1950) .... Pam Reynolds
38. Twilight in the Sierras (1950) .... Pat Callahan
39. Trigger, Jr. (1950) .... Kay Harkrider
40. South of Caliente (1951) .... Doris Stewart
41. Pals of the Golden West (1951) .... Cathy Marsh
42. "The Roy Rogers Show" (1951) TV Series .... Dale Evans
43. "The Roy Rogers & Dale Evans Show" (1962) TV Series .... Co-host
44. Saga of Sonora (1973) [TV]
45. "A Date with Dale" (1996) TV Series
Miscellaneous Crew - Filmology (1990s) (1950s) (1940s)
1. The Big Show-Off (1945) (dancer: "Cleo From Rio" / "There's Only One
(You"(uncredited) (singer: "There's Only One You") (uncredited)
2. Rio Grande (1950) (lyricist: "Aha, San Antone")
... aka John Ford and
(Merian C. Cooper's Rio Grande (USA: complete title)
3. "The Roy Rogers Show" (1951) TV Series (song "Happy Trails")
4. Sleepless in Seattle (1993) (singer: "Jingle Bells")
Composer - Filmography
1. The Big Show-Off (1945) (song "There's Only One You")
2. Rio Grande (1950) (song "Aha, San Antone")
... aka John Ford and Merian
C. Cooper's Rio Grande (USA: complete title)
3. Even Cowgirls Get the Blues (1993) (song "Happy Trails")
Herself - Filmography (1960s) (1990s)
1. Johnny Cash! The Man, His World, His Music (1969) (uncredited)
2. Roy Rogers, King of the Cowboys (1992) .... Herself
1. Steal This Movie (2000) (uncredited)
2. Christmas From Hollywood (2003) (V) .... Herself
Notable TV Guest Appearances
1. "Toast of the Town" playing "Herself" (episode # 6.2) September 21, 1952
2. "This Is Your Life" playing "Herself" in episode: "Roy Rogers" January 14, 1953
3. "What's My Line?" playing "Mystery Guest" September 26, 1954
4. "The Dinah Shore Chevy Show" playing "Herself" December 16, 1956
5. "The Perry Como Show" playing "Herself" October 26, 1957
6. "Playhouse 90" in (episode: "Target for Three" episode # 4.1) October 1, 1959
7. "The Bell Telephone Hour" in (episode: "Designs in Music") December 8, 1961
8. "The Andy Williams Show" playing "Herself" February 28, 1963
9. "The Andy Williams Show" playing "Herself" December 10, 1963
10. "The Bell Telephone Hour" playing "Herself" in episode: "The American Song" February 2, 1965
11. "The Andy Williams Show" playing "Herself" September 27, 1965
12. "The Andy Williams Show" playing "Herself" September 11, 1966
13. "The Dean Martin Show" playing "Herself" September 28, 1967
14. "The Andy Williams Show" playing "Herself" September 27, 1969
15. "The Mike Douglas Show" playing "Herself" May 7, 1970
16. "The Mike Douglas Show" playing "Herself" July 26, 1977
17. "The Muppet Show" playing "Herself" (episode # 3.22) January 23, 1978
It was 10 years ago, February 7th, since Dale took her final breath and went Home to be with Roy and other Rogers family members. Her beautiful smile, grace, love of God, Family and Country, will live forever in our hearts and memory.
Our Dearest Dale, May you Rest In Peace.
These next articles are furnished by our pal Sheila Reiboldt. She is a fellow-member of "The Official Roy Rogers-Dale Evans Fans Message Board" website. Thank ya Sheila for the memories!!
"In going over some of the archived files from the local newspaper, the Daily Press (Victorville CA), I found some very wonderful articles written about Dale in the days following her death on February 7, 2001. In honor of Dale and her memory, here goes."
Sunday, February 11, 2001
(Fans travel from near and far to pay respects)
By: TERI FIGUEROA/Staff Writer
APPLE VALLEY: Dorothy Adkins never met Dale Evans, but she didn't want to miss the chance to say goodbye.
"I love Dale so much," she said. "She shared her pain and her joy with everyone. She was such a good person."
As she spoke, her voice began to quiver and tears welled in her eyes.
"I am ill right now," Adkins, 63, said. "But I told myself I'm going. If I have to crawl in the wind, I'm going."
The San Bernardino woman was not alone in her grief. About 1,100 people, many of them strangers to the Rogers family, came to share in the memorial services held for Evans Saturday.
Western stars Evans and her late-husband Roy Rogers were heroes to a generation of fans. A few generations, in fact.
"I love the whole family," 30-year-old Kim Jordan said. "I read 'Angle Unaware', and I really felt close to her."
"Angel Unaware" is Evans' first book. It's a 63-page story of her daughter Robin, and Robin's first conversation with God. The child died two days before her second birthday. She suffered from Down syndrome.
The Victorville woman brought her family, including her 3-year-old son Brandon to the memorial service at Church of the Valley in Apple Valley. Brandon has Down syndrome.
"After I had Brandon three years ago, I wished I could meet her," Jordan said. "She could have told me how she felt as the mother of a Down syndrome baby."
The memorial service drew fans from near and far. Two women made the trip from Sherman, Texas, just outside Dallas, to pay respects.
"These people (Rogers and Evans) were not only our heroes, they are like family to us," 60-year-old Shirley Duke said. "I love this family. I would have spent anything to be here today."
Duke and her cousin Pat Emory said they met the family three decades earlier. Ms Duke has remained in contact with the family ever since. In fact, Ms Duke was Dale's Dinner guest in 2000, She was given a beautiful belt buckle from the Rogeres and the museum for her intence dedication to the "King of the Cowboys and Queen of the West and their family, and her contributions to the museum.
James Watts brought his son Justin to the services to share a piece of his own childhood.
"I was a Roy Rogers cowboy as a kid," Watts, 57, said. "Cowboy boots, cowboy guns, cowboy hats. I loved the shows. I didn't make it to Roy's funeral, but I wanted to come to this."
Over and over, fans, and now mourners, told of Rogers' and Evans' influence on their own lives.
"They touched my heart when I was growing up," Jerry Kozitka, 50, said. "Their show was about good, clean life. The gave us morals. They were so great."
Thursday, February 8,, 2001
"Queen of the West dies at 88"
(Dale Evans inspired millions with books and TV appearances
By A.J. GARDNER/Staff Writer
APPLE VALLEY: The world knew her as "the Queen of the West." High Desert neighbors knew her as a neighbor, a friend and a matriarch.
Friends and fans everywhere are mourning the death of Dale Evans, who died Wednesday of congestive heart failure at her home in Apple Valley, with her children by her side. She was 88.
She was married to "King of the Cowboys" Roy Rogers for 50 years.
Together, Rogers and Evans starred in more than two dozen Western movies and a Western television show before going into semi-retirement in 1965. She co-wrote their well-known theme song "Happy Trails to You" in 1951.
They lived in Apple Valley for more than 30 years.
She was born Frances Octavia Smith on Oct. 31, 1912, in Uvalde, Texas. Evans first showed her desire to perform at the age of 3, when she tried to sing a solo gospel in front of her church.
When she was 7, her family moved to Osceola, AR., where she attended school. By the age of 12, she had advanced to the ninth grade.
When she was 14, Evans eloped with Thomas Fox, a childhood sweetheart. She had a son, Tom Fox Jr., when she was 15 years old. Before she was 16, Thomas Fox asked Evans for a divorce.
After they separated, she enrolled in business school and got a job as a secretary at an insurance firm in Memphis, Tenn. One day, as she was trying to write lyrics for a song at her desk, Evans' boss caught her singing and offered to let her perform on the radio.
Her performance led her to the top of the Memphis market, where she sang on the radio, performed at dances and even got her own half-hour show on CBS radio.
When she was about 19, Evans landed a job at a radio station in Louisville. There, she tried out her first stage name: Marion Lee. The station manager told her it was trite and changed it to Dale Evans.
Evans protested the name change, saying Dale was a boy's name. The manager told her that Dale was the name of his favorite actress and, besides, no one could mispronounce the one-syllable words.
The name stuck
Evans later returned to her parent's farm in Texas to give her son a safe place to grow up. Gradually, Evans' singing career got off the ground again and, in 1938, she was featured on the cover of Rural Radio magazine.
Not long after, Evans married Robert Dale Butts, a pianist and orchestra leader she met in Louisville. Together, they moved to Chicago, where she started performing regularly on stage and radio.
Before long, she was approached by an agent in Hollywood who wanted her to try out for a part in "Holiday Inn" with Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire. Although she did not get the part, Fox studios signed her to a one-year contract making $400 a week. She moved to California permanently in 1941.
While in California, Evans and Butts divorced.
Hundreds of USO shows
During World War II, Evans performed in nearly 500 shows for the USO. She also performed extensively for the USO during the Vietnam War.
Evans met Roy Rogers in the early 1940s through a mutual agent, but it was not until 1944 that they first worked on a movie together, "The Cowboy and the Senorita." By that time, Evans had at least nine movies to her name.
Rogers and Evans made 28 movies together. Her last movie with Rogers, "South of Caliente," was released in 1951.
Rogers and Evans became a team though, at one point, she distanced herself from Rogers to get away from Western movies. She eventually rejoined the regular cast and made personal appearance tours with him.
In the fall of 1947, about a year after Rogers' wife Arline died, Rogers proposed to Evans at a rodeo in Chicago. She accepted and the couple married on Dec. 31, 1947.
By that time, her own son was grown and in the Army. With the marriage, Evans gained three new children, Cheryl, 7, Linda Lou, 4, and Roy Jr., 15 months.
Facing a new marriage and a new life as a mother, Evans turned to religion to help her through what she described as a troubled time. She became a born-again Christian, followed by Rogers a short time later.
Two years into her marriage, at the age of 37, Evans found out she was pregnant. On Aug. 26, 1950, she gave birth to Robin Elizabeth, who had Down syndrome and heart problems.
By that time, Rogers had a radio program, "The Roy Rogers Show," which Evans performed on before she became pregnant. While taking care of Robin, Evans wrote the song "Happy Trails" for the show, inspired by Rogers' habit of writing "many happy trails" on autographs.
Famous TV show
In 1951, after Rogers cut ties with the Republic movie studio over a contract dispute, Evans and Rogers started "The Roy Rogers Show" for television. It was carried by NBC and sponsored by General Foods' Post Cereal. The show ran until 1957, when it went into syndication on CBS.
During that time, Rogers and Evans moved their family to Encino to escape the smog-filled Hollywood Hills because Robin had breathing problems.
Robin later died, two days before her 2nd birthday. Robin was the inspiration for Evans' first book, "Angel Unaware," a 63-page story of Robin's first conversation with God. Evans donated the book's royalties to the National Association for Retarded Children.
Rogers and Evans decided to adopt children to fill their house after Robin's death. They found Mary Doe, "Dodie", in an orphanage in Dallas. Five-year-old John David, "Sandy," who was abused by his parents, was found in an orphanage in Kentucky.
During a visit to Scotland, Rogers and Evans met a 13-year-old girl, Marion Fleming, who was living in an orphanage though her parents were still alive. Although they could not adopt the girl, she became their ward after living with the family for a year in California.
At that point, Evans told Rogers that they needed to stop visiting orphanages or they would soon have to move into a motel. Instead, they moved to a 133-acre ranch in Chatsworth.
Not long after, Rogers and Evans considered adopting another child. This time, they wanted a girl about the age of 3½ year-old Dodie. With some help, they located a 3½ year-old girl from Korea, who they named Deborah Lee.
They had Deborah just nine years when the girl was killed in a car accident on a church bus trip. From the tragedy came Evans' book, "Dearest Debbie." The proceeds from the book went to World Vision International, which helped Evans and Rogers adopt Deborah.
In 1965, the same year Evans and Rogers moved to Apple Valley, Sandy joined the Army. He later died after being goaded into drinking an overdose of alcohol. Evans wrote a book called "Salute to Sandy," from which royalties went to Campus Crusade for Christ.
Move to Apple Valley
The Rogers family passed through the Victor Valley on the way to television shoots and family vacations at their property in Big Bear.
In 1964, after Deborah died in a church bus accident, the family moved to Apple Valley, where they went into semi-retirement.
Although the pair did not stop making appearances altogether, they did limit their social obligations. Their home became a stopping point for tourists, some of whom would knock on their door.
Rogers eventually bought the bowling alley across from the Apple Valley Inn and established the Roy Rogers-Dale Evans Museum.
In 1976, the museum was moved to Victorville on a 40-acre stretch of land next to Interstate 15. According to the book "Happy Trails: Our Life Story," Evans and Rogers often toured the museum before it would open for the day, looking at the collection of their lives on display.
Rogers and Evans started the Victor Valley Child Abuse Task Force in 1982. Ten years later, they changed the name to the Happy Trails Children's Foundation. They later opened the Cooper Home in 1997 to house abused children.
Evans and Rogers were active in Christian evangelism and appeared regularly on the Trinity Broadcasting Network, where Evans had her own show, "A Date with Dale."
Despite suffering a heart attack and stroke, she continued writing inspirational books in the 1990s, including "Hands of the Potter," which she said was "the fine print of my life."
Rogers died in July 1998 of congestive heart failure at the age of 86.
Evans said at the time, "What a blessing to have shared my life together with him for almost 51 years."
'Life is a Blessing'
After Rogers' death, Evans continued writing books while working at the Happy Trails Foundation. Her last book, "Life is a Blessing," was released in 2000.
She remained a well known celebrity and philanthropist in the community. As a result, the Apple Valley Town Council dedicated Dale Evans Parkway in 1998.
Evans has three stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. She was indicted into the Cowgirl Hall of Fame in 1995.
She is survived by her six children, 15 grandchildren and more than 30 great grandchildren.
Thursday, February 8, 2001
(Evans stood for goodness)
By CHE TABISOLA/Staff Writer
VICTORVILLE: Family, friends and admirers of Dale Evans remembered the legendary wife of Roy Rogers as matron to an era of goodness and wholesome values who will be greatly missed.
Evans' death closes a period of American history, said Roy "Dusty" Rogers Jr. Her life represented a time of old-fashioned values, he said.
"It's the end of an era," Rogers said. "It was a special time, a time of fair play and heroes who wouldn't let you down."
Visitors and staff at the Roy Rogers-Dale Evans Museum in Victorville were shocked and saddened Wednesday as news of her death spread. More than 55,000 visitors a year traveled to the High Desert landmark to see photos and mementos of the famous Western couple.
Nancy Black came to the museum from Charlestown, IN, with her husband Ed to see the museum.
Evans was a model of faith and family, she said. Black still has a childhood figurine of Evans riding her horse Buttermilk, she said.
"She went through so many hard times but she just kept her faith," Black said. "She was what the American woman should be like."
Evans was a gracious and beautiful performer, said visitor Kathy Favreau, who had traveled from Colorado Springs, CO, with her husband and mother to visit the museum.
Favreau remembered listening to the couple on the radio before her family had a TV, she said.
"We love her," Favreau said, adding today's entertainers pale in comparison.
"Now entertainers have no class," Favreau said. "Today they come and go and nobody will remember them. This is a legend."
Dave Koch, museum Internet services administrator and a member of the Evans' family by marriage, said Evans was simply the best person a person could be.
Ruth McCloskey, Evans' seamstress for 11 years, remembered the Queen of the West as a warm and compassionate woman.
"She was an exceptional lady," McCloskey said. "She helped me through the loss of my mother. She cared for people and was always concerned for everyone else."
Joel Dortch, executive director for the Happy Trails Children's Foundation, said Evans will be remembered by the fans who grew up watching her and Roy Rogers.
"They influenced millions of kids," Dortch said.
Children who watched the couple are now adults who are teaching their children the values they represented, Dortch said.
Family friend Kathy Williams agreed.
"Their life was about family," Williams said. "What a great legacy."
For years, the Rogers family passed through the Victor Valley on its way to television shoots and family vacations at their property in Big Bear.
In 1964, after their daughter Deborah died in a church bus accident, painful memories lingering at the family's San Fernando Valley home led them to Apple Valley.
n Apple Valley developer Newton T. Bass found out the Rogers family was putting down roots in town, he approached Roy about lending his name to the Apple Valley Inn. Rogers agreed.
For "Roy Rogers' Apple Valley Inn" brought fame to the town and boosted local pride.
Tinsley, family friend and chairman of the Apple Valley Chamber of Commerce, remembered Evans as an important member of the High Desert community.
We put Apple Valley on the map," Tinsley said. "We knew her as being a neighbor. The rest of the world knew her as a star."
Evans was truly the Queen of the West, Apple Valley Mayor Ted Burgnon said.
She was an inspiration to Apple Valley and all who knew her," Burgnon said.
Victorville Councilman Terry Caldwell remembered growing up watching Evans' and Rogers' feature films.
"I could remember how awestruck I was the first time I saw them in person at Church of the Valley," Caldwell said. "I could have been knocked over with a feather.
"She and her husband were an institution in this community," Caldwell said. "For them to live in the High Desert was a real blessing for this community."
The Rev. O. William Hansen met Evans in 1965 the week she and her family moved to Apple Valley from Chatsworth.
"She was a real fighter who faced reality head-on," Hansen said. "Her faith was her fortress, the be-all and end-all of her life."
Rep. Jerry Lewis, R-CA and 34th District state Assemblyman Phil Wyman added to those who remembered Evans.
"She will be missed by her thousands of friends in Apple Valley and throughout the Victor Valley," Lewis said. "But she will be remembered by all who grew up watching the wonderful adventures of the King of the Cowboys and Queen of the Cowgirls over five decades."
Wyman said simply: "She was a remarkable Christian woman who always placed godly values, commitment to family and love of country first in her life."
He plans to adjourn today's regular session of the Legislature in Evans' memory.
The Dallas Morning News
(Editorial on 02/09/2001)
(A wonderful tribute to Cowgirl Hall of Fame member Dale Evans)
Dale Evans: She became a role model off screen as well as on TV. For more than 50 years, she was half of America's most endearing western duo. Roy Rogers and Dale Evans rode into the hearts of generations of young people and never left. Through scores of movies and a 1950s TV series that ran for six years, they delivered gentle lessons in how to be a straight-shooter, have an abiding faith, stand up for what's right and share a marriage based on mutual love.
When Roy Rogers died in 1998, the world lost the "King of the Cowboys." But it was Dale Evans who gave women a heroine who provided strength through her personal beliefs during adversity. Her death Wednesday ends a remarkable public career and personal life. Despite the birth of a Down syndrome child who died two years later and the loss of two other children in accidents, Ms. Evans maintained a faith that seemed to become more firm through each tragedy. Years after the couple was making only limited appearances, Dale Evans continueto host a weekly show on a Christian broadcasting network and wrote spiritual books. Although Roy Rogers drew much of the public's attention, Dale Evans' spunk and humor often caught late-night television show hosts by surprise. When her husband was asked to recount a story about stuffing his horse Trigger so he could be put on display, Dale joked that she intended to stuff Roy and put him on the horse after he passed away.
Although her early career had little to do with the outdoor life she adopted, Dale Evans truly earned the title "Queen of the West" and a spot in the Cowgirl Hall of Fame in Fort Worth in 1995. It's a good bet that somehow, somewhere, Roy and Dale are together again singing their signature theme, "Happy Trails to You."
It's been a long while since we loaded up the Yesterdayland News Van and headed out west to Victorville, CA. None of us knew quite what to expect. After all, we were going to meet a legend - a true star from the Golden Age:
In more than 28 films and 100 television episodes, Dale Evans rode the range with her on-screen and off-screen partner, Roy Rogers. During that time, she wrote the classic tune "Happy Trails," which became Roy's theme song.
The woman hailed as the 'Queen of the West' met us inside the Roy Rogers/Dale Evans Museum and graciously gave us this interview. She was lively, animated, and after nearly forty years away from the lights and cameras, she still had that twinkle in her eye. She told us about her childhood, and her salad days as a singer. She told us about her movie career, her family, and how much Roy Rogers meant to her. More than once, she was moved to tears. And so were we.
The interview was conducted in front of a small audience of fans who were fortunate enough to be in the museum that day. Dale made a point to say hello to each and every one of them, and then she posed for pictures with her beloved horse, Buttermilk.
At the end of the interview, she grabbed my hand and said, "Yesterdayland. I like the sound of that. We need to remember Yesterday."
Yesterdayland Remembers Dale Evans
YESTERDAYLAND:Tell us, what it was like when you were growing up?
DALE EVANS: Well, I was the first child in a very, very large family. And I was kind of spoiled and a little bit of a show-off. I was always asked to recite things, tell stories; I was always performing for my relatives. I had six aunts and they spoiled me, you know; I had a wonderful childhood. We lived in a small town in Texas named Italy. And my family lived on a farm about three miles out of town. I was born in New Valley, Texas, out of San Antonio about 90 miles, close to Laredo and the border of Texas and Mexico. I've always loved Texas and San Antonio. I used to say, when I grew up and I had enough money and could retire, I was going to live in San Antonio. I had a good childhood.
YL: What was your family like?
DE: I had one brother, and we used to have a few spats but we loved each other dearly. I was very jealous of him when he was born because I had been the first grandchild, and then he came along. But he was a really good boy. He served in the Second World War in Okinawa. I'm very proud of my brother.
Every Sunday afternoon when I was a little girl, we used to take rides out in the
country, the whole family in an open touring car, an old car called the Franklin. You wouldn't remember it. It had a kind of a sloping hood. One Sunday afternoon, my great-grandfather, my aunt, my mother and my dad, we were all in this car, and I was in the back seat with them.
A wasp flew in and stung me on the arm. I was about 4 years old, and I cried, and I cried. And my grandfather was quite a codger, and he was a tobacco chewer. He reached in his mouth to cut a fresh wad of tobacco and slapped it on my arm, and it drew the stinger out from that wasp. I'll never forget it in my life.
YL: Did you have any favorite books as a child?
DE: Of course I loved Alice in Wonderland. My family was Baptist and I learned a lot of scripture at an early age. I loved all kinds of books, but particularly Alice in Wonderland.
YL: What was your first movie experience?
DE: Saturday afternoon Tom Mix. Not only Tom Mix, but Ruth Roland. Ruth Roland was a serial queen and she was always being saved from being tied to a railroad track or something. My aunt in Arkansas owned a theatre and I could go free on Saturday afternoons. And I could see all my heroes. I loved action pictures. Loved Westerns and action serials.
YL: Did that make you go into entertainment?
DE: Yes. I was in radio first in Memphis, Tennessee, on a small station there, and then the CBS station there. And then I came in 1941 to Hollywood from CBS in Chicago. I was [in Chicago] for about three years. And I was on a program called News and Rhythm on Sunday morning. I was heard by two men [from Hollywood] who were fairly influential at the time, a man named Joe Rifkin, he was an independent agent, and Danny Winkler, who discovered Jane Fonan the singer.
YL: What was it like when you first came to Hollywood?
DE: Well, when I first came, I came to 20th Century Fox under contract. Actually, I made my screen test at Paramount; but I didn't get a contract there because they had a whole raft of singers. They had a woman named Betty Rhodes I think was her name, Betty Hutton, Dorothy Lamour; they had all of these singers. So my agent Joe Rifkin took it out to 20th Century Fox to show it to Zanuck out there, and he gave me a contract. He gave me a contract making an awful lot of money, more money than I had ever made in my life. Actually it was too much money to be a green-horn, you know what I mean? It really was.
So anyway, when I walked on the lot the first day, somebody came up to me and said, "Are you Dale Evans?" because I had sung on radio a bit. And I said, "Yes." And he said, "You will never make it on this lot. You look too much like Betty Grable, even to the legs." And he said, "She's the queen of the lot; and there's no room for two." But I stayed there for a year and did my contract out. And then I met a man named Art Rush. He was a wonderful man from Ohio, Roy's home state. And Art heard me sing one time on a camp show during the Second World War. I did 500 camp shows for the Hollywood Victory Committee and USO.
YL: How did you meet Roy Rogers?
DE: Well, during the war I did so many camp shows for the Hollywood Victory Committee and USO, and I went out to Edward Air Base with Art Rush, who handled me for radio, who had put me on The Chase and Sanborn Hour with Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy. And Roy was there. He had just finished Under Western Stars, his first big Western, with Claire Trevor and with John Wayne. He played John Wayne's younger brother. I saw him on the dance floor, he was there with the Sons of the Pioneers, and he was dancing with Claire Trevor. And Art Rush marched me right out in the middle of the floor and said, "I want you to meet Roy Rogers. He's my rising star."
And he said, "I'm handling both of you for radio. You should know each other." And we just said hello. I was impressed by [Rogers] because he was very clean-cut looking and no Hollywood act, a very real person. Very real person. And I was impressed by that. He reminded me of my bother. I didn't make any pictures with him at Republic for quite a while; I did several other things. They promised me a big musical, a big one; but they gave it to Connie Moore and they put me with Roy in a picture. The first picture that we did was ...
YL: Cowboy and the Senorita.
DE: Yeah, Cowboy and the Senorita. And Joe Kane, [director of] the picture said, "Dale, you sound like C.C. Uhal." And they thought because I was from Texas, surely I could ride a horse. Roy said when he saw me the first day on a horse, "I never saw so much sky between a woman and a horse in my life." So I had to take a few lessons. But between Roy, Gabby Hayes, and the riding club, I finally got to where I could sit a horse pretty good. And I was so fortunate because I had a wonderful double in Roy's pictures. She's like my sister. We lived together half the time. Her name was Alison Van.
Her husband was Van Springstein, who was a director at Paramount. She was a terrific girl; she taught me a great deal about horses. And my little horse was Buttermilk, that they put me on at Republic. In our series, Buttermilk was a very, very rough horse, rough; and Alice, she rode like a man, exactly like a man. She rode as well as Roy. And when Buttermilk got antsy and jumping around, she'd just take her fist, which was like a man's, and go [CLICK] right between his ears and his whole ears would lay down and then he would behave. But he was a good little horse.
YL: What were the first pictures with Roy like?
DE: Well I had had no screen experience at all, but he was a very nice person to work with. And Gabby Hayes was a love. As a matter of fact, the day I went on the lot at Republic, I walked on the lot and here is this huge, beautiful car, Lincoln Continental, with the top down. Here sits this old man with the beard straight as an arrow, an old beat hat that had bullet holes through it, you know; and I said to myself, "I've seen Hollywood." And then I had the pleasure of working with him. He taught me more than anybody.
YL: Tell us about Roy Rogers.
DE: He simply was a wonderful, real person. He was a love to get along with and I miss him with all my heart. We were married 52 years, a long time. He was a good guy. People liked him cause he was real. He wasn't flashy and, you know what I'm saying, he was just a real person. He was just that boy from Duck Run, Ohio; and he never got over remembering that he was from a little town in Ohio. He would say, "I am what I am and that's all I am," when people would ask him about what he thought about his success, you know what I'm saying. He was not vain. He was a very humble boy and very, very shy when he was a little boy, very shy. But so many people loved him. You couldn't help but love him.
YL: You and Roy worked with some of the greatest character actors in the movies - Andy Devine, Pat Brady, and Pinky Lee were some of Roy's sidekicks. Can you tell us about them?
DE: I loved Andy. He was a wonderful guy to work with. You had to be careful because Andy really knew how to steal scenes, but he was a great guy to work with, beautiful, and an excellent comedian. And he showed me a lot of things, too. We made several pictures, Roy's pictures with Andy Devine.
YL: Pat Brady?
DE: Oh Pat, I loved Pat; we all did. Pat was a wonderful comedian, and a wonderful person – one of the best friends I ever had.
YL: Pinky Lee?
DE: He was very sweet to work with, and very talented.
YL: You also worked with Iron Eyes Cody.
DE: He was in our pictures. He was very nice, and I admired Iron Eyes a great deal. We have a big dinner every year called the Boot Awards for Western pictures and Iron Eyes always gave the blessing in Indian fashion. He's a sweet person. I liked him very much.
YL: Tell us about Trigger.
DE: Actually, the first time that I had ever seen Trigger was when Olivia de Havilland rode him in Sherwood Forest in Robin Hood. And I thought it was the most beautiful horse I had seen in my life; and I never changed my opinion. People come in (the museum) sometimes and they say, you know they used to say to Roy while he was still here, "How could you do that to Trigger, to put him up there on that?" And Roy would say, "Would you like for the worms to get him?" I got pretty mad when he said he was going to put him in the museum. I said, "Trigger was so good to you. I've been on tour all over the United States. He never threw you, he complied with everything that he had to do with his tricks." I (told him), "I think he ought to be buried in a wonderful, big pet cemetery with a huge gravestone that gave his whole history." He says, "It's my horse, and I'm going to have a museum, and he's going to be in it." I said, "When you die, I'm going to put you on him."
That's a true story. I'm a little ashamed of saying it, but I never did put him on the horse.
YL: Trigger's name always appeared before yours in the credits. Was there a healthy competition between you and Trigger?
DE: People ask me that all the time. It was Roy Rogers and Trigger, Sons of the Pioneers, Gabby Hayes, and Dale Evans. And I said so what? I'm in the picture!
YL: What about the Roy Rogers TV show?
DE: Well it was a lot of work, very, very hard work; but very rewarding work. We met people across the country when we did state fairs in the summer. We took our children with us all over the country, and took Trigger and the Pioneers, and Pat Brady. Our children worked in the program. Roy used to shoot targets. They would throw targets up full of confetti, and he would hit them and the confetti would just go everywhere, you know, and the people enjoyed it. And Dusty, Dusty sang a little song called "Bulls Eye." And every time he hit one that busted and the confetti flew everywhere, the kids and I would yell, "Bulls eye!" It was fun.
YL: Did you have any favorite TV shows?
DE: Oh so many. So many. I'm a TV fan. I watch a lot of stuff. I liked the family show, Florence Henderson played in it.
YL: The Brady Bunch?
DE: Yes. I liked it because it was clean, and I thought this public needed it very much, and I respected her and still do.
YL: What was life like on the ranch?
DE: Well actually, we lived on a ranch in Chatsworth before we moved up here to Victorville and Apple Valley. It was fun, but a lot of hard work for the people that had to work the ranch. We did film a few of our series there. We filmed a series called Brave Eagle, all about Indians that were fine Indians, really good Indians. We didn't work in the [series], but they did work on our ranch, and we did build an artificial lake for them to film around the Indians, around the lake.
We had a long, long driveway in the back past our master bedroom; and they would go flying down there with their feathers, you know their war bonnets and yelling. You know Roy and I only had one child together, our little Robin Elizabeth, and I did the little book Angel Unaware about her. And then when she passed away, we adopted an Indian child, Choctaw like Roy. Roy was part Choctaw, and that's the way we got her from Dallas, Texas. She was about 3 years old and I was in the kitchen at the ranch house. She came running around the house, "Momma, momma, momma they're coming after me!" It was the Indians, you know, with the war bonnets, yelling and carrying on. She thought they'd come to pick her up.
YL: Which was your favorite movie?
DE: My Pal Trigger. That's my favorite of every movie I did with Roy, because I loved that horse, to begin with; and because it showed Roy's loyalty to Trigger, and I thought it was a marvelous human interest picture. That's my favorite of all of them.
YL: Tell us about the sponsorship by Post.
DE: Well they sent us a whole bunch of Post cereals and I fed them to our kids; and they got kind of tired of them. Yep. But they were good people to work with, wonderful.
YL: You wrote "Happy Trails."
DE: Would you like to know why I wrote "Happy Trails"?
DE Okay, Roy was doing a Western hit parade over on ABC at the time; and he had a very cute little theme song, with the orchestra and with the singers:
Don't forget smiles are made out of the sunshine,
And a frown from a rainy day.
You'll be more than paid if you remember
That a smile goes a long, long way.
Cute song, but it sounded like a little kid song. And I said to myself, here's this cowboy that can sit a horse so well that you can put an apple on his head and it never moves when he's galloping that horse. I said he deserves a trail song.
Now my mother went to a Presbyterian college in Texas; and when she graduated, my Grandfather gave her a trip out west to the Grand Canyon, and my mom went down that donkey trail on the Grand Canyon, on a donkey with a bunch of people. I had a picture of her in a big Mexican hat. She told me about the guides, one of the guides at the top would say, "La-da-dee"; and the guide at the bottom when you got down there would say, "Dee-dee." And I was a big fan of Ferde Grofe's music. And he had one selection that had a wonderful trombone slide in it that, "La-da-dee-dee-dee." That's how "Happy Trails" got written.
YL: You wrote music for Rio Grande.
DE: That's just one I was recording at the time:
I want some black-eyed peas.
I want some mustard greens.
I want some corn on the side.
I want my chicken thighs with a golden hide.
And then the Pioneers recorded it in the John Wayne picture.
YL: What was your favorite moment?
DE: My favorite moment was when I got word that the Los Angeles Times had put the little book Angel Unaware, that I had written after our baby died, on their best-seller list, and it was there for months. That was the crowning thing for me.
YL: Tell us about your children.
DE: Oh my goodness, you're asking a big question. We've had nine children all together. We had adopted children. Roy had children before we married. And he and I had little Robin together. When she passed away, we adopted Dodie, whose name was at the time, just Mary from a hope cottage in Dallas, Texas; but we got her because Roy was part Indian, part Choctaw. We had lost little Robin; and I was thrilled to death to get her. She's a wonderful girl today. She's just an absolute whiz.
YL: Tell us about the museum.
DE: Well Roy always wanted one. Our first museum was a bowling alley out in Apple Valley. We took the lanes and we made display cases. Trigger was in there, Buttermilk was in there, my horse, and everything that you see in here was in the first museum. He always had a dream to have a museum after he got in pictures. You know Will Rogers had a museum near the ocean in Santa Monica, and Roy said, "I'm going to have one. I'm going to have a museum." And he saved everything he ever got. I used to throw a lot of stuff away and he'd get mad. He'd say, "That's for the museum." I'd say, "You can't put that in the museum, that doesn't belong there." "It's going to be my museum."
That's when I told him I was going to put him on Trigger.
YL: What do you miss from the Golden Age of the Western?
DE: I don't think the Westerns will ever be over. You know why? That is our heritage. People in the East years and years ago moving West, moving West, searching out the West. There's something about the West. God gave me a little song called "Hazy Mountains" that goes:
There is something about the West.
Puts you heart and your soul to rest.
Makes you feel you're really blessed.
There's a ceiling of blue above,
And some trees peaceful as a dove.
No wonder that people love hazy mountains.
All of us travel much too fast,
Kidding ourselves along.
Go to the mountains and gaze in the haze,
You'll discover you're wrong.
You can tell them your troubles, too,
And they'll never talk back to you.
They just listen and comfort you,
And I love the mountains. The reason I love that song so much is because I was carrying our little Robin at the time and Roy and I were going shooting up in Northern California with a friend of his. We were going through the desert, and then we came to where the mountains were in the distance in a haze, and it got that little song in my mind, "Hazy Mountains."
YL: How does it feel to be called the 'Queen of the West'?
DE: I consider it a wonderful privilege to have been in the Western field with people, our fans. I don't want to say fans, our friends who are real people. And they loved Roy for what he was, the boy from Duck Run.
Incidentally, the state of Ohio has just honored him, you know. He and his father built their little family house at Duck Run, that's out of Portsmouth, and the state of Ohio has conferred a beautiful bronze, I don't know what you would call it, not a statue but a bronze (plaque) about Roy. Absolutely beautiful.
When I was a little girl I used to say when I grew up I was going to marry Tom Mix and I was going to have six children. And I really do think that I overdid myself, cause I married Roy Rogers, and all in all we had 9 children and 35 great-grandchildren! I came from two big families and I think big families are wonderful and we need more of it in this nation where people band together in a common good.
LOS ANGELES -- Nothing quite beats a good, old-fashioned shoot-'em-up, actors agreed Saturday at a ceremony paying homage to the Western.
This poem right below, is one of the last things Dale wrote, and it states what defined a "cowgirl" for her.
by Dale Evans
Cowgirl is an attitude, really.
A pioneer spirit,
A special American brand of courage.
The Cowgirl faces life head on,
Lives by her own lights,
And makes no excuses.
Cowgirls take stands,
They speak up,
They defend the things they hold dear.
2000 Entertainment-Show Buzz-August 7, 2000
(*Western contributors lasso *Golden Boot Awards*)
"You can ride horses and there are no scenes with telephones or television sets," actor Tom Berenger said Saturday at the 18th annual Golden Boot Awards.
Berenger, who appeared in "Rustler's Rhapsody" (1985) and played Butch Cassidy on TV, was among several people honored for their involvement in westerns.
Other recipients included Dale Evans, who was singled out for the Founder's Award. "Little House on the Prairie" actress Melissa Gilbert and Robert Stack also were honored.
Ms Evans hosted the Christian faith program "A Date With Dale". At one time the most recognized media couple in the world, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans made some 400 recordings together, were seen on television or film in more than 50 countries, and immortalized on endorsed items that ranged from boys and girls western wear to lunch pails. The Roy Rogers fast food franchise is still one of the most widely distributed in the US.
With four children from previous marriages, Ms. Evans and Roy Rogers had only one child together, a daughter, Robin, who died from an illness and complications of Downs Syndrome before her second birthday. The tragedy inspired the first of Ms. Evans's 28 inspirational books, Angel Unaware, which was applauded for raising tolerance and awareness of retarded children in an era when most handicapped children were institutionalized. Ms. Evans donated all of the book's proceeds to charities, notably The American Foundation for Retarded Children. In addition to their four surviving children, Ms. Evans and Roy Rogers became foster and adoptive parents of a number of special need and minority children.
A prolific songwriter as well as an author and actress, Ms. Evans claimed more than 200 songwriting credits, including the famed "Happy Trails", "A-Ha, San Antone" and the popular song of faith "The Bible Tells Me So". In addition to 3 stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Ms. Evans numerous industry and civic honors include California's Mother of the Year (1967), The Texas Press Association's Texan of the Year Award (1970), enshrinement in the Cowgirl Hall of Fame (1995) and the Cardinal Terrence Cook Humanities Award (1995) as well as special awards from several Western film societies, fan clubs, and the Country Music Hall of Fame.
With Roy Rogers, Ms. Evans co-founded the Roy Rogers-Dale Evans Museum in Apple Valley, CA. In 1976 it moved to Victorville, CA, not too far from their Apple Valley home. The museum preserves memorabilia from their films, television serials, and from the 1950s Golden Age of Westerns, as well as several co-stars: Horses Trigger, Buttermilk, and faithful dog Bullet were all mounted for posterity after their natural deaths, and may still be viewed by fans at the re-located Roy Rogers & Dale Evans Museum & Happy Trails Theatre, in Branson, MO.
After several years of illness which included a stroke, heart attack and a pacemaker implant, Dale Evans passed away peacefully in the company of family on February 7th, 2001 at the age of 88. Preceded in death by her husband of 50 years, Roy Rogers, her and Roy's only child together, Robin Elizabeth, an adopted son John David "Sandy" Rogers and an adopted daughter, Deborah Rogers, the actress is survived by children Thomas, Roy Jr., Dodie, Linda Lou, Marion and Cheryl, 15 grandchildren, 30 plus great grandchildren, and 6 great-great grandchildren. Dale Rogers was to be interred beside her husband Roy Rogers at their ranch.
Dale Evans became emblematic of All-American family values and domestic solidarity, the beloved singer and actress arose from a tumultuous early life that lent itself to a number of her 28 inspirational books.
Hope y'all enjoy the tribute I have here for the "Queen of the West", Dale Evans! To learn more 'bout Dale Evans Rogers, Click Here.