Collin Raye rules

I’ve been able to interview multi-platinum-selling, country-music star Collin Raye a few times over the years.

He is a very nice and cordial person. In fact, the songs he chooses to record are pretty much musical renditions of himself. And he has done things for the Make-A-Wish Foundation and other charities.

He has always called Utah his second home, but then made it his real one when he moved to Salt Lake City late last year.

In the last few months, he stepped up to the plate and got involved with the community. Last year, he sang at a benefit concert that helped raise money for and the spirits of the families who lost loved ones when the Crandall Canyon Mine collapsed.

And this past Saturday, Raye was able to help Showtime Utah, Pleasant Grove’s musical and variety theater.

Each week the theater puts on family-friendly musicals, plays and concerts. It was all going as planned last Saturday — until the leader of the headlining band had to undergo emergency surgery for an undisclosed ailment two hours before curtain.

Scott Shumway, leads Mama’s Boys, a group comprising himself and his five sons. Shumway was taken to the hospital and the remaining boys didn’t know if the show could continue at that point.

Fortunately, Showtime Utah owner Joan Peterson recognized Raye in the audience. He had made a reservation under an assumed name and was planning to enjoy a dinner and the show incognito. Peterson courageously asked Raye if he would mind stepping in for the ailing Shumway.

Raye graciously agreed, and, after finding a hat and guitar, joined the boys on stage and also sang some of his trademark hits.

The elder Shumway did make it through the surgery, but was disappointed he didn’t get to see Raye perform with his sons.

This world needs more people like Raye. Nothing is too small or big for him to lend a hand.

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