Gary Robert Rossington, an accomplished American musician and songwriter, passed away on March 5, 2023. Rossington was best known as a founding member of the Southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd, where he played lead and rhythm guitar, and as a co-founder of the Rossington Collins Band with his former bandmate Allen Collins. Born in Jacksonville, Florida, Rossington initially pursued his interest in baseball and even aimed to play for the New York Yankees. However, his passion for music ignited in his early teenage years after hearing the Rolling Stones, which led him to give up his baseball dreams and pursue music instead.
It’s worth noting that Rossington’s love for baseball played a crucial role in the formation of Lynyrd Skynyrd. Meeting Ronnie Van Zant and Bob Burns while playing on rival Jacksonville baseball teams, the trio decided to jam together, leading to the formation of The Noble Five. They later changed their name to The One Percent before finally settling on the name Lynyrd Skynyrd in 1969. Rossington grew up in a single-parent household, and Van Zant became a father figure to him, teaching him and his bandmates how to drive and introducing them to various life skills when they were teenagers.
When Rossington was suspended from high school for his long hair, Lacy Van Zant, the patriarch of the Van Zant family, advocated for him and explained that Rossington’s mother relied on the income he earned from his band. Eventually, Rossington dropped out of high school to focus on Lynyrd Skynyrd full-time. Rossington’s passing is a great loss to the music industry, and his contributions as a founding member of Lynyrd Skynyrd will continue to be remembered and celebrated for generations to come.
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Meet Gary Rossington parents
Gary Rossington was born to his mother Berniece Rossington in Jacksonville, Florida, United States. While information about his mother is available, there are no records about his father. Despite this, Rossington went on to achieve great success in the music industry as a founding member of Lynyrd Skynyrd and the Rossington Collins Band. His passion for music and dedication to his craft helped him become one of the most celebrated American musicians and songwriters of his time.