MADISON, N.C. -- One of the founding members of the North Carolina gospel group The Hopper Brothers has died.
Group publicist Aaron Crisler said that 86-year-old Monroe Hopper died Friday in Madison. No cause of death was given.
Claude Hopper founded the group in 1957, bringing in Monroe Hopper and three more of their brothers. The group sang for President Ronald Reagan in 1981. Monroe Hopper made his last appearance with the group in 2012 as it was inducted into the Gospel Music Association's Hall of Fame.
The group is now known as The Hoppers, as various family members have taken over for the brothers.
Claude Hooper says his brother was his best friend and was always there if he needed anything on the farm or on the road.