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The man who killed Opry legend and "Hee Haw" star David "Stringbean" Akeman and his wife in 1973 will ask the state for his freedom Wednesday.

Convicted killer John A. Brown, 63, will appear before a member of the Tennessee Board of Parole at 9:30 a.m.

On the evening of Nov. 10, 1973, Brown and his cousin, Doug Marvin Brown, ambushed Stringbean Akeman and his wife, Estelle, as they returned home from the Grand Ole Opry. Stringbean was known to carry a lot of cash, and the Brown cousins had been looking for it in the Akemans' Ridgetop cabin.

John Brown shot Stringbean as he walked into cabin. He then chased Estelle across her front yard and shot her in the back of the head as she begged for mercy.

Both men were convicted and sentenced to serve two life sentences in prison. Doug Brown died in prison in 2003.

John Brown already has faced the parole board four times during his four decades in prison. Despite a long record of good behavior, the board has denied his request each time.

Country music legends have lined up to keep Brown behind bars. In the days leading to Brown's last hearing in 2011, Bill Anderson started an email campaign encouraging people to write letters against his release. Opry member Jan Howard spoke at the hearing.

Only one board member will cast a vote for or against parole at Wednesday's hearing. It will take up to two weeks to get an official decision from the board as a whole.

Brown is being held at the Lois M. DeBerry Special Needs Facility in Nashville.

Banjo player Grandpa Jones found the Akemans' bodies the morning after they were killed. His wife, Ramona Jones, was one of the first people on the scene.

She said she thinks about her friends each day. She wrote a letter to the parole board in advance of Wednesday's meeting.

"He still murdered two very innocent people," she said Tuesday. "Don't let him out."

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