A stellar example of Dolly Parton's generosity came on April 1 when the singer announced that she'd donated $1 million to Vanderbilt University Medical Center's efforts to combat the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.
In the seven-plus months since then, Parton's donation has helped fund the creation and testing of the Moderna vaccine, which the Guardian reports as having 95 percent protection from the virus.
Parton's kindness toward Vanderbilt paved the way for several research papers on the virus plus convalescent plasma studies, which treat people infected with the virus with the plasma of those carrying antibodies against the virus.
"My longtime friend Dr. Naji Abumrad, who's been involved in research at Vanderbilt for many years, informed me that they were making some exciting advancements towards research of the coronavirus for a cure," Parton wrote on social media.
In a follow-up tweet, the country legend wrote that she hopes her generosity towards the Nashville-based hospital "encourages people that can afford it to make donations."
The news comes a day before Parton's Imagination Library YouTube Channel launched Goodnight With Dolly, a 10-week series of Thursday night bedtime stories starring Parton as the "book lady."
"This is something I have been wanting to do for quite a while, but the timing never felt quite right," Parton said in a press release. "I think it is pretty clear that now is the time to share a story and to share some love. It is an honor for me to share the incredible talent of these authors and illustrators. They make us smile, they make us laugh and they make us think."
Children's books in video series include The Little Engine That Could by Watty Piper, There's a Hole in the Log on the Bottom of the Lake by Loren Long, Llama Llama Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney, Pass It On by Sophy Henn, Stand Tall Molly Lou Mellon by Patty Lovell, Violet the Pilot by Steve Breen, Max & The Tag-Along Moon by Floyd Cooper, Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Peña and Parton's own I Am a Rainbow and Coat of Many Colors.
This story originally ran on April 1, 2020.