- Associated Press - Friday, March 7, 2014

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - Singer John Denver never called West Virginia home, but his 1970s hit “Take Me Home, Country Roads” is one of the state’s official songs.

Forty-three years after it first hit the airwaves with the words “Almost Heaven, West Virginia,” the Legislature approved a resolution Friday designating it as one of four state songs.

The song has resonated with residents for decades. It’s played after every West Virginia University basketball and football game. Denver sang it in person at the dedication of Mountaineer Field in Morgantown in 1980.

The state song effort was started two years ago by the widow of “Gilligan’s Island” actor Bob Denver, who is no relation. Dreama Denver is a Bluefield native. She says she got the idea after playing the song on her morning radio show in Princeton.

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