The woman who was the inspiration for the 1958 Buddy Holly hit “Peggy Sue” has died. The AP reports that Peggy Sue Gerron Rackham of Lubbock, Texas, died Monday at University Medical Center in Lubbock. She was 78.
The hospital did not release details about her cause of death.
“Peggy Sue Gerron in 2008 released her autobiography ‘Whatever Happened to Peggy Sue?: A Memoir by Buddy Holly’s Peggy Sue’ to mark the 50th anniversary of the song,” the AP notes, adding: “Gerron, while promoting her autobiography, said material for the memoir came from about 150 diary entries she made during the time she knew Holly. Gerron was born in Olton, Texas, but moved to Lubbock, where she attended high school and met Holly and his friends.”
She’s quoted saying in 2008: “I wanted to give him (Holly) his voice. It’s my book, my memoirs. We were very, very good friends. He was probably one of the best friends I ever had.”
She married drummer Jerry Allison, from Holly’s band the Crickets. The couple later divorced.
The song was originally going to be called “Cindy Lou,” after Holly’s niece, but the story goes that Allison wanted to impress Peggy Sue so he convinced Holly to change the name.
Holly later wrote the song-sequel “Peggy Sue Got Married.”