RIP, Jimmy Dean. The singer-sausage king died yesterday, at the age of 81. Supermarket shoppers might remember him best for his eponymous line of sausage patties, bacon, and breakfast sausage (originally called "pure pork sausage"), for which he did many hammy commercials. For years Dean was the company's mild-mannered commercial spokesperson. He started Jimmy Dean Foods in 1969 with his brother, Don. The company was later acquired by Consolidated Foods, which eventually morphed into the Sara Lee Corporation. Jimmy Dean also has fans in the country music community. His 1961 song "Big Bad John" was a major hit, and Dean was inducted into the Country Hall of Fame earlier this year. We're sizzling up a roll of mild country sausage in your honor, Mr. Dean.