Among the rules for those entering to pay their respects was one that said only one service program would be available per couple or group. Friends of mine, Deborah Anne and her daughter Callie, just happened to be in Nashville when George Jones died. Six years ago today, they were in line to attend the public service for the country music legend at the Grand Ole Opry House. They got in. A couple of months later, they mutually agreed to give me their service program.

The black card featured three photos of George on the front cover. The back cover featured hand-written lyrics to his signature song, “He Stopped Loving Her Today.” Inside was a list of pallbearers, performers and speakers.

That day, I watched the service as it was streamed live on the Internet. Vince Gill’s struggles through his performance of “Go Rest High on That Mountain,” with Patty Loveless, is one of the most heart-wrenching you will ever see (check out the video). Yes, I admit I cried. To see the audience, including Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood, stand out of respect with George’s casket before them was just one of several moving moments. Alan Jackson’s finale of “He Stopped Loving Her Today” was another.

The service program is a treasured keepsake.