The Llano Country Opry will host a Tribute To Boxcar Willie by Boxcar’s son Larry Martin (Boxcar Willie Jr.) and former Texas Trainman band member Chuck Jennings on Saturday, February 11, at the Lantex Theater in downtown Llano. The show begins at 7:30 PM and admission is $10.00 per person. Tickets are now on sale at the Llano Chamber of Commerce, Llano National Bank, Lively Computers in Kingsland or by calling (325) 247-5354.Born in Sterratt, Texas, Lecil Martin joined the United States Air Force in 1949, and served as a pilot and flight engineer for the B-29 Super Fortress during the Korean War in the early 1950s. In Lincoln, Nebraska, Martin was once sitting at a railroad crossing and a fellow that closely resembled his chief boom operator, Willie Wilson, passed by sitting in a boxcar. He said, “There goes Willie.” He pulled over and wrote a song entitled “Boxcar Willie”. It eventually stuck and became Martin’s nickname . In 1962, Martin met his future wife, Lloene, in Boise, Idaho. They would later have four children.In San Jose, California, Martin attended a talent show as “Boxcar Willie” and performed under the nickname for the first time. He won first place, a $150 prize and a nickname that he would forever go by. That was his part-time vocation, however; he was still in the Air Force and had been flying daily missions. He later became a Flight Engineer on KC-97L aircraft in the 136th ARW in the Texas Air National Guard, including air refueling flights around the USA and overseas in Germany.In 1976, Martin left the Air Force and became a full-time performer. He entered American mainstream pop culture consciousness due to a series of television commercials for record compilations of artists who were obscure in the United States, yet had large international followings, such as Slim Whitman and Gheorghe Zamfir. He went on to become a star in country music, selling more than 10 million records, tapes and CDs worldwide. In 1981, Martin achieved a professional landmark by being inducted into the Grand Ole Opry as its 60th member.In 1985, Martin moved to Branson, Missouri and purchased a theater on Highway 76, or 76 Country Music Boulevard. In addition to the Boxcar Willie Theater, he opened a museum and eventually had two motels, both bearing his name. Boxcar Willie was one of the first big stars to open a show in Branson, paving the way for the other nationally-known names that followed. Diagnosed with leukemia in 1996, Martin died on April 12, 1999 in Branson at age 67. Martin was a first cousin to the actor Tommy Lee Jones, who is also from Texas.Boxcar’s son Larry was a regular performer at the Boxcar Willie Theater in Branson. After his father’s death, Larry decided to continue the Boxcar Willie legacy and began performing as Boxcar Willie Jr. During his show, he tells some very interesting stories about his father along with the great train and classic country music that made his dad a million selling figure in the industry.“I am really looking forward to coming down to Texas” Boxcar Willie Jr. said. “My dad was born in Texas and we have always been proud of our roots. I am also extremely proud that one of my dad’s former band members and best friends Chuck Jennings will be performing with me. It is going to be a great night.”Jennings has an incredible history in the music industry as well. He was also a long time member of the Tony Douglas Band working as a front man and guitar player. Jennings also wrote the Douglas classic “His and Hers.” After performing in Branson with Boxcar Willie for over ten years, Jennings moved back to the Dallas area where he resides today.Other entertainers on the show will include Lynn Massey, Ben Watson, Don Ricketson, Sammy Geistweidt, Bucille Snotgrass and Charlie Walton. Tracy Pitcox will MC the show.For more information about the Llano and Marble Falls Opry or other shows from the Heart of Texas Country Music Association, log on to: www.heartoftexascountry.com.