Dolly Parton on donating to the Moderna vax: I get more credit than I deserve

Dolly Parton dressed in a sequin angel-like outfit with wings and holding her hands in prayer. Photo is a still from Dolly's Netflix movie Christmas on the Square
Speaking of modest celebrities, these last few months have illuminated how amazing Dolly Parton is. The woman is a goddess blessing us all with her presence. Just in case you have been living under a rock, let’s recap what we learned about Dolly this last year. A few weeks ago, we found out that Dolly took the royalties that she made from Whitney Houston’s version of her song, “I Will Always Love You,” and put the money back into a Black community in Nashville. Dolly has launched her first fragrance that will be sold exclusively through HSN. Dolly is even cowriting a book with James Patterson. Those are just a few of the things Dolly is getting up to. Not only is Dolly encouraging people to get vaccinated, she also donated $1 million last year to help develop the Moderna vaccine. But Dolly doesn’t believe that is praise worthy. Speaking to U.K.’s Absolute Radio, Dolly said she feels that she is getting more credit than she deserves for that donation. Below are a few more highlights via Yahoo!:

“When the pandemic came out, I just felt kind of led to do something because I knew something bad was on the rise, and I just wanted to kind of help with that, so I donated to help with that,” Parton told U.K.’s Absolute Radio. “Mine was a small part, of course.”

Parton donated $1 million to Vanderbilt University Medical Center, which aided in the development of Moderna’s vaccine. She has repeatedly used her platform and urged people to get vaccinated.

“I probably get a lot more credit than I deserve, but I was happy to be part of that and to be able to try to stop something in its tracks that’s really become such a monster for all of us,” Parton continued. “So I was happy to do that. My heart just kind of leads me into where I’m supposed go and what I’m supposed to do at the time.”

[From Yahoo!]

I’m in my 40s and I feel tired just writing about what Dolly has done in the last year. She will always be a she-ro in my eyes. Unlike other country singers, Dolly is spreading hope and encouragement so that people can stay healthy. Dolly seems to be fully aware of her privilege as it concerns people of color and people living in poverty. I understand that Dolly didn’t actually glove up and do the work that made the vaccine a reality but Dolly cannot discount the fact that she contributed to the quick rollout of the Moderna vaccine. I haven’t heard of another celebrity giving that amount to research. So I get where Dolly is coming from but I hope she knows she is worthy of us celebrating her contribution. May Dolly be blessed for the rest of her days.

Dolly with the team who developed the Moderna vaccine, via Instagram

Dolly getting her first Moderna vaccine, via Instagram

Dolly performing in a still from Dolly Parton's Heartstrings on Netflix

Photos credit: Netflix and via Instagram

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9 Responses to “Dolly Parton on donating to the Moderna vax: I get more credit than I deserve”

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  1. Katherine says:

    I just did a vacation to Dollywood (which I was terrified to go on with Delta on the rise, but my vaccinated extended family and I really need a get together for a lot of emotional and family reasons) and let me tell you it was DELIGHTFUL. I’m not a theme park person and I found it so charming. Her mark is on everything and you can just tell this woman does nothing in her life or career halfway. If her name is on it it’s going to be top tier quality. And I’m always so impressed with her to have navigated as neutral of a public image as she has for decades. She seems to always be guided by a wish to do the right thing and no reason to make it more controversial than that and it never seems inauthentic when she describes it that way. I adore her.

    • manda says:

      There is a dolly parton podcast (dolly parton’s america), and I just listened to the episode about dollywood. I always THOUGHT I wanted to go, but now I KNOW I do. It sounds wonderful!

    • PrincessPossum says:

      I grew up about an hour away from Dollywood. My best friend was an only child and when her parents got her a season ticket each year they would get me one too. I spent almost every summer weekend of my adolescence at Dollywood and I miss it dearly.


    Bless Dolly. Also that is the perfect top for a vaccine photo op! I need to watch 9 to 5 ASAP

  3. SarahCS says:

    It’s also important to acknowledge what her actions represent alongside the actual $$ she gives out and invests in communities, so many people sit on piles of cash and do nothing with it. Also, at the time of her donation the US government was doing nothin but spread lies and disinformation about the pandemic so someone as high profile as Dolly investing in the science was a big deal.

    I mean she’s just wonderful.

  4. Betsy says:

    Oya, I love your posts. So positive and bright side-s.

    I love Dolly. Of course she’s being modest about this; she’s self aware enough to understand that she’s lucky to be able to donate that and that the scientists who put in the work did the work.

  5. Dlc says:

    I do not usually think that our society’s idolization of famous people is good. Just because someone is talented at singing, or acting, or sports, does not make them good people. They are still human beings with flaws. Be your own hero! Be the person your child admires! That being said…. Dolly Parton seems like a truly wonderful and admirable person.

  6. jferber says:

    Dolly is my patron saint for the good she does. Too bad politicians (rethugs, okay?) don’t take her example. They CAUSE harm, the opposite of the Hippocratic oath for doctors.