Born Henry John Deutschendorf in Roswell, NM, on December 31, 1943, he was raised in an Air Force family, and grew up in various regions of the southwestern U.S. As a teen, his grandmother presented him with a 1910 Gibson acoustic guitar, and while attending Texas Tech University he began performing local clubs. Adopting the stage surname "Denver" in tribute to the Rocky Mountain area he so cherished. One of the most popular and successful recording artists of the 1970s, the clean-cut, all-American singer touched millions with his sentimental country songs about nature, love and family. ...Johns heart was in the mountains and wilderness. His career began with the Chad Mitchell Trio in 1965 and took off after Peter, Paul and Mary scored with his “Leaving on a Jet Plane. ”He also tried his hand at acting, appearing in the film Oh God! and the television movie Foxfire. However, he often shied away from acting, choosing to concentrate on activism for causes such as world hunger, ecology, wilderness protection and space exploration. Johns heart was in the mountains and wilderness. Denver was killed October 12, 1997, when his experimental plane crashed into the Pacific Ocean near California's Monterey Bay. His recordings include “Take Me Home, Country Roads,” “Annie's Song” and “Sunshine on My Shoulders", and many more.