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Dolly Parton turned down Presidential Medal of Freedom offer from Trump twice

RANCHO MIRAGE, CA - JANUARY 24: Singer Dolly Parton Performs at Agua Caliente Casino on January 24, 2014 in Rancho Mirage, California. (Photo by Valerie Macon/Getty Images) (2014 Getty Images)

Dolly Parton has turned down the nation’s highest civilian honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, twice, TODAY reports.

According to the report, the country music icon was offered the award by former President Donald Trump’s administration twice, but didn’t accept it.

“I couldn’t accept it because my husband was ill and then they asked me again about it and I wouldn’t travel because of the COVID,” Parton said in an interview with TODAY.

The queen of country also added that she has already heard from President Joe Biden regarding the Presidential Medal of Freedom, according to TODAY.

“Now I feel like if I take it, I’ll be doing politics, so I’m not sure,” Parton said.

According to TODAY, former President Barack Obama could be the influence behind President Biden’s recent offering.

In an interview last fall, Obama said he should have honored Parton, but assumed she had already received the award.

Obama was surprised to learn that Parton hadn’t said she deserves the award and that he planned to “call Biden.”

In 2020, Parton was recognized for her efforts to curb COVID-19 by donating $1 million to Vanderbilt University to support coronavirus research, which helped make the Moderna vaccine.

[RELATED: Dolly Parton donates $1M to fund Moderna coronavirus vaccine research]

The singer’s other philanthropic efforts include establishing Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, a literacy program that’s donated more than 100 million children’s books, and her Dollywood Foundation which has donated $1,000 per month to families in East Tennessee that lost their homes to wildfires, TODAY reports.


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