Barry Dean grew up in Pittsburg, Kansas, and began his career as a songwriter in Nashville, Tennessee. But 17 years ago, his daughter was born prematurely in Joplin and his family stayed at the Ronald McDonald House. "What's special is that 17 years ago Barry and Jennifer Dean were our guests and we're back now being their guests at this wonderful unique event" says Annette Thurston, the director of the Ronald McDonald House. Dean and three other GRAMMY award winning songwriters performed the songs they wrote, with proceeds going to the Four States Ronald McDonald House. "I just can't imagine all the stress and everything that people go through in those circumstances. And to have a safe place that they can call home while they're going through something like that it's just got to mean the world to them" says songwriter Lori McKenna. The director of the Joplin Ronald McDonald House says that the center has helped out 2,784 families from 37 different states and two foreign countries. "It makes me emotional when you think about all the people they have helped through the years" says McKenna. Dean wasn't the only artist in the award winning bunch from Pittsburg. "This is the place that made me. I feel like this is where my roots are. It was the teacher's the neighbors, the friends..my parents. This is what shaped me. So this is especially meaningful to get to come back and play in my hometown" says Jenn Schott. As Barry Dean performs his song "God's Will " which was inspired by his journal entries when his daughter was in the NICU...he knows the show will help families just like his.
Nashville Songwriters Perform at Pitt State to Help Families of Premature InfantsMore>>