• 63°

Honoring 3 men who left a legacy — through gospel music concert

They were very best friends who loved to spend their time singing gospel music.

Now they’re being honored annually by the Legacy Concert Series, made up of several gospel groups that include individuals who knew and loved them.

The series began in 2016 as the Ray Gates Memorial Singing, to honor the memory of the singer, who died in 2014. His two singing buddies, Chuck Rushing and Sonny Riley, who had been a part of the concerts paying tribute to Gates, both died in 2017. The event was renamed in 2018 to honor the memory of all three men.

This year’s event will take place Jan. 26 at 5 p.m. at New Prospect Baptist Church, and will feature Day Three, Gloryland, Answered Prayer, The Camerons and Bros. 4 Quartet.

Stephanie Reynaud, daughter of Chuck Rushing and member of Gloryland, is happy to continue to be a part of the memorial.

“We’re excited about it. We try to do this every year to honor [Dad] because this what he did to serve the Lord,” said Reynaud. “This is how they loved to spend their time, this and with family. It’s why we continue to do what we do.”

Rushing was part of Gloryland until his death. The group has carried on with its other members, Rushing’s daughter Stephanie and his grandchildren Reese, 20, and Maggie Rose, 14. Once a quartet, the trio decided not to add anyone to replace their patriarch and bass vocalist.

“We decided we’re not going to add anybody,” Reynaud said around the time the series was renamed to include all three men. “You can’t fill his shoes, and nobody can take his place.”

Admission is free for the concert, and a love offering will be taken. Doors open at 4 p.m.

But the concert is not the only way Reynaud’s father is being remembered in the city that was his home.

A second annual Chuck Rushing Memorial BHS Alumni Game will be held Feb. 9 at Brookhaven High School’s Moyer Field.

Singing gospel may have been Rushing’s favorite pastime, but baseball was a close second. It was a love he passed on to his grandchildren.

“If you couldn’t find him, look at the ball field,” Reynaud said. “We had such a great turnout last year and we’re looking to have an even bigger turnout this year.”

The game will be played 1:30-4:30 p.m.

“We are super excited about it,” Reynaud said.