Nashville, Tenn. (August 19, 2023) — Ray Hildebrand, professionally known as “Paul,” one half of the 60s Pop duo, Paul & Paula, passed away peacefully yesterday, August 18, surrounded by his family in Kansas City. He was 82.

Paul & Paula were best known for their 1963 No. 1, multi-million-selling hit, “Hey Paula.” Hildebrand and his singing partner, Jill Jackson (Paula), met in Texas while attending college. Though never romantically involved, the two went on to form their duo, becoming internationally known with several hit records. In addition to “Hey Paula,” Paul & Paula found success with Billboard-charting songs “Young Lovers,” “First Quarrel,” “First Day Back at School,” and “Something Old, Something New.”

Born December 21, 1940, in Joshua, TX, Hildebrand lived his life as a dedicated follower of Jesus. His solo recording of “Say I Do,” following his Paul & Paula days, was a pioneer hit of the Contemporary Christian genre. He worked for several years with The Fellowship of Christian Athletes and traveled the country sharing his music and faith.

Hildebrand is preceded in death by his wife, Judy Hendricks. He is survived by his daughter, Heidi Sterling, and son, Mike Hildebrand, both of Kansas City.

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