All are roles once or currently filled by former Winchester resident Charlie Dick
, who is more famously known as the husband of legendary singer Patsy Cline
was a part of Patsy's life for about seven years - they began dating in 1956 and married in 1957, and the union ended in 1963 with Cline's death at the age of 30.
Their life together was central to the 1985 film "Sweet Dreams."
"It's a good movie if you like fiction," said the semi-retired Dick
, who was portrayed as abusive to his
"We were both hard-headed and hot-tempered," he
said during a telephone interview from his
While their relationship was tempestuous, the nature of their marriage has been described over the years in biographies, films, and video.
"I think most of it's out by now," Dick
charlie2.jpg (7053 bytes)Charlie Dick: recently (above), and a few years ago....(below)
admitted that the marriage "was not all a bed of roses" and has said he
did strike Cline once to calm her
got hysterical one night."
As for what Patsy's fans believe about the behavior ascribed to him in the 1985 film, Dick
joked: "Nobody [tried to] beat the hell out of me yet."
Born on May 24, 1934, at his
family's home near Whitehall, Charles A. Dick
became a Winchester resident at a fairly young age.His family lived on National Avenue, and young Charlie started attending Virginia Avenue Elementary School in the third grade.
The following year, the boy - small for his
age - tagged along with some friends and transferred to Handley High School
, which had grades 4-12 at the time.He
attended through the 1950 school year, dropping out when he
was 15 or 16.
"I didn't get along with teachers very well," Charlie
said.Once out of school, he ended up working as a linotype operator for The Winchester Evening Star.
This job, however, wasn't his
first exposure to the newspaper.
As a younger boy, he
helped Butch Boxwell, a newspaper carrier with a large route, and then later took on his
own newspaper delivery route.His
territory ranged from the former newspaper offices on Boscawen Street down to the present-day site of Quarles Elementary School
.Dick said he was then given a route closer to his home.He
moved from deliveries to circulation, wrapping packages and engaging in similar work.
quit school, Dick
said, one of his
bosses gave him a shot at learning linotype for the afternoon paper."He
let me go in there and learn at night."
The paper's advertising director at the time also assisted Dick
, helping him with his
English and teaching him how to hyphenate text at the end of a line.
The ex-linotype operator still showed pride in his
former work during his
recent interview, stating that there were no "ragged rights" - uneven right margins, such as in this story - in the paper of that era.
"Every line was justified [spaced to end evenly]," he
The two met in Berryville at one of her
singing dates, and when Dick
to dance, she
declined the offer, saying she
couldn't dance while working, Dick
dancing with someone, and asked her
It was then that Charlie and Patsy
began their relationship, Dick
said.Around that time (between meeting Patsy and being drafted into the Army in March 1957), Charlie left the newspaper.
While they were dating, Charlie
accompanied Cline to New York in the early summer of 1956 for her second audition for Arthur Godfrey's "Talent Scouts" television show.
...That same month, Charlie was drafted, and left to join the Army in March 1957.
Their separation didn't last long, though, as the couple decided to marry on Sunday, Sept. 15, 1957 - one week after Cline's 25th birthday.
After the wedding, the two moved to Fayetteville, N.C., because Charlie
was stationed at Fort Bragg.
"Oh boy!We'll put you in psychological warfare," is how Dick
had been asked about his
civilian occupation and, with his
background in linotype work, he
was directed toward psychological warfare, which produced leaflets and similar items.Later, Dick was a motor pool dispatcher, which wasn't too hard, since the motor pool had about 20 vehicles and he dispatched about two each day.
"Other than having to be there, the Army
was nothing [difficult] ...I just fell into everything," Dick
The couple eventually moved back to Winchester in March 1959, after Dick's
two years of draft service ended.
They lived in a house in Colonial Heights off Berryville Avenue, but didn't stay long, deciding to head to Nashville.
"We moved on government money," Charlie
said, noting that he
had continued to receive allotment checks after he
was discharged from military service.He
had cashed and spent the first check, believing that no more were coming.Five or six more arrived, though, and they kept the wrongly sent checks.
When they decided to move, the two "cashed them and took off," Dick
said, adding that they paid the money back later.
--- While Patsy recorded in Nashville, Charlie found work at a printing shop, and eventually worked as a union printer for two Nashville newspapers.
By 1960, Patsy
- who had been signed by Four Star records and then leased to Decca records - was signed to a Decca recording contract, Charlie
and Julie Fudge (the daughter of Patsy Cline and Charlie) greet fans during the Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival Grand Feature Parade on May 5, 2001.
found Patsy's hospital bill recently.She
was hospitalized for 33 days, and "the hospital bill was $1,200."
"The dates were looking good, and the money was looking good, and we needed it," Charlie
asked him to help her
on the road temporarily, dealing with disc jockeys and almost acting as a road manager.
"I didn't really know what I was doing," Dick
said, even though his
job became more permanent.
applied, got the position, and stayed for eight years.
In 1965 he
married again, to another woman in the country music business, Jamey Ryan.The couple had a son in 1968, Charlie Dick Jr.
, known as "Chip."
Jamey and Charlie
married on July 4 - "a lot of fireworks," he
said - and divorced in 1972.
"I was in Daytona at the races . . . ," he
recalled."We're still friends."Charlie
worked as an independent promotions man after leaving Starday.In 1980, the "Coal Miner's Daughter" - a biography of Loretta Lynn - renewed interest in Cline and her
In the mid-1980s, he
met two Canadian brothers who wanted to produce videos about country stars, including Jim Reeves, Marty Robbins, and Patsy Cline
"I was the last one they found," Charlie
agreed to work with them, but only "if I could have control" to clear up the discrepancies he
said were in "Sweet Dreams."Charlie
helped to set up interviews for the resulting video, "The Real Patsy Cline," and watched the editing process as well.
When the brothers decided to open an office in Nashville, they offered to let Charlie run it.He
also became a part-owner in the company.
However, just as the brothers wanted to branch out into pop music profiles, "Patsy
got hot as pistol," in the eyes of the public, Charlie
portion of the business, and began handling Patsy's estate with the company Legacy Inc.
That company was established after the family heard about two stage shows, "Always, Patsy Cline" and "A Closer Walk With Patsy Cline."Dick
said the original intent was to close the shows, but instead the company was created and licensed the productions.
, who is listed in the phone book, also keeps in contact with fans and listens to their stories - such as that of a woman whose 4-year-old daughter loves Cline's songs and can sing a half-dozen of them.
sometimes has to correct erroneous information, he
said of Patsy's fans, "I'm amazed at the things they do know."Dick
remembered a chance meeting with a woman at