Hundreds of people celebrate the life of country music star John Grenell at the musical memorial

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Friends, family and fans of all ages sang together at a musical memorial to celebrate the life of Kiwi country musician John Hore Grenell.

About 500 people gathered at the James Hay Theater on Saturday afternoon to commemorate the life of the singer.

Grenell, who made his first record in the 1960s as John Hore, was best known for his version of Welcome To Our World.

He died last week at the age of 78 following a heart attack.

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Welcome to my world: the best of John Hore Grenell.

Provided

Welcome to my world: the best of John Hore Grenell.

People stopped at the entrance to the theater to sign a souvenir book for the singer-songwriter.

It was a musical memorial service with songs and stories.

Candles were lit in front of a stage where Grenell’s songs were performed as the crowd sang.

A public memorial service celebrating Grenell's life was held in Christchurch on Saturday.

JOHN KIRK-ANDERSON/Stuff

A public memorial service celebrating Grenell’s life was held in Christchurch on Saturday.

Grenell was born in 1944 in Ranfurly, Central Otago, according to biographies by the New Zealand Music Commission and Christchurch City Libraries.

He grew up on the family farm in Kyeburn and attended Otago Boys High School in Dunedin.

Grenell toured the world in the 1960s and released a string of hit albums and singles. By age 19, he had sold 100,000 records.

The singer and songwriter was best known for his version of Welcome To Our World.

JOHN KIRK-ANDERSON/Stuff

The singer and songwriter was best known for his version of Welcome To Our World.

In the 1970s and 1980s he took a break from the music industry to help set up a hiking tourism business in Queenstown.

He returned to the music industry in the late 1980s as John Grenell and released more hit records.

Grenell later ran a farm at Whitecliffs, Canterbury, and raised horses.

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