NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Nashville stars, friends and fans remembered longtime Grand Ole Opry member Jim Ed Brown for his faith and friendships at a music-filled memorial service Monday in Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium.

Brown was known for his 1959 No. 1 hit “The Three Bells,” which he recorded with his sisters as part of the trio The Browns. He later had solo hits with “Pop-A-Top,” “Morning” and “Southern Loving.”

Fellow singer Brenda Lee, who in March announced that Brown and his sisters would be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, called the group “true pioneering legends.”

Lee was one of several speakers who talked about Brown’s Christian faith, saying that when she visited him at the hospital, he showed no fear of death. Lee said Brown even told her he had a vision of Jesus in his hospital room.

Brown died of cancer on Thursday at age 81. Lee’s voice cracked as she suggested, “Other beloved voices from our country music family have already joyfully raised their voices to welcome him home into the presence of God.”

The official induction ceremony for the 2015 Hall of Fame members comes in the fall, but Country Music Association CEO Sarah Trahern said they held a special induction ceremony for Brown at the hospital two weeks ago. Performers at the memorial included The Oak Ridge Boys – who also are 2015 inductees into the Country Music Hall of Fame – Crystal Gayle, Craig Morgan, Vince Gill and The Gatlin Brothers.

– From news service reports