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Country’s Greatest Love Stories: Reba & Narvel Blackstock

Charley Gallay, Getty Images

Reba & Narvel Blackstock

When asked to name the person who inspires her most, Reba doesn’t hesitate. “Narvel,” she says, naming her manager and husband of 21 years. “He is my inspiration because he is always coming up with ideas, then I have to come up with an idea every once in a while to keep up him.”

Reba and Narvel began working together in 1980 when she was a rising young singer from Oklahoma and he was in her band. Their working relationship grew into a warm friendship that blossomed into love. The two were married in 1989 and have a son, Shelby, who turns 21 on February 23.

When asked what first attracted her to Narvel, Reba says, “His professionalism, and he always had class. He was a very classy man and very organized and had great ideas. He’s always looking ahead and always thinking. He’s a great leader.”

Though working together can often put a strain on show business marriages, Reba says respect has been the key to their successful union. “We highly respect each other,” she says. “We like each other. We love each other but that respect has to be there. I respect his judgment and he respects mine. We respect each other. I think that is one of the strongest things in a relationship. You have to have respect for each other.”

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