Clear Lake remembers ‘Big Bopper Jr.’


J.P. Richardson Jr., son of one of the three rock-and-roll legends who were killed in a 1959 plane crash near Clear Lake after performing at the Surf Ballroom, died Wednesday, Aug. 21, in Katy, Texas “after a long, hard fight,” according to his father’s website.

Richardson, 54, had a heart pump installed in June.

“Bopper Junior,” as he was known, was born in April 1959, less than 90 days after the February plane crash that took the lives of his dad, Ritchie Valens, Buddy Holly and pilot Roger Peterson.   

Fueled by the support he received from rock and roll fans in Clear Lake, Richardson said he decided to become an entertainer late in his 30s. 

“The Surf Ballroom was the magnet that drew me into entertainment,” he stated at one of the many Winter Dance Parties he attended at the Surf.  In recent years he often participated in the February Dance Party weekends as an emcee and performer.  He relished the opportunity to re-create the songs and shout out the tagline “Hello, Baby!” which his father made famous with his hit, “Chantilly Lace.”

  He was also on hand in October 2011 to dedicate the “Three Stars Plaza” near the ballroom which honors - Read More Via e-Edition

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