Randy Travis is mourning the loss of Nashville lighting technician, Thom Roberts, who worked with Travis for many years. Roberts was killed outside his Nashville home by his wife, with his loss permeating throughout the music community. For Travis, the loss of Roberts is personal, and one he grieves deeply.
“The stage has gone dim with the passing of Thom Roberts,” Travis writes on social media. “For many years, the Randy Travis band and crew had the opportunity to share the winding roads and the beautiful venues with one of the very best stage lighting technicians in the business. Thom not only had a magical sense about lighting a stage; but, he had a quiet, charismatic presence that ignited your soul. Always willing, with a ‘can do’ and ‘happy to do it’ attitude. He was a gentle giant of a man that wore a constant smile on his face and carried a song in his heart. One would search a lifetime to find a kinder, gentler spirit. Thom was my friend and I loved him dearly.”
Travis vowed to remember Roberts as he continues doing appearances across the country, celebrating his iconic career.
“As we go back out next week, for the ‘More Life’ tour of Randy Travis, the music will not be near as sweet; but, I will once again be reminded of the blessing I was given to have Thom Roberts on the road with us for so many miles, and so many memories,” Travis says. “It certainly won’t be the same; and, I know I speak for the entire band and crew when I say the light that he truly created, in our hearts, will never be extinguished or forgotten. Tonight, I will look toward heaven and am sure I will see flashes of Thom’s handiwork in the night sky—letting us know he is home, and all is well.”
Roberts worked with plenty of artists, including Vince Gill and Olivia Newton-John, plus provided lighting for various events and ceremonies until he recently retired.
“Thom was a talented lighting professional and just as importantly he was a humble, yet extremely genuine man,” Bandit Lites, Inc. Vice President Michael Golden said (via WKRN). “I got to know Thom in the early 90s when I had the opportunity to work with him as the supplier of lighting for Vince Gill, and I consider Thom one of the “old guard” that transformed the wild west of touring into a respected and professional career.
“Thom worked for many artists and institutions around the city, but anytime I ever heard his name a smile would cross my face,” he continued. “This city and our music community will miss Thom, but we will all be better because of his reputation and the foundation he helped build.”