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Kenny Chesney Receives Pinnacle Award at 2016 CMA Awards

Gustavo Caballero, Getty Images
Gustavo Caballero, Getty Images

While many revered awards are given out at the CMA Awards, one that was particularly special the 2016 ceremony was that of the Pinnacle Award, given this year to Kenny Chesney. Awarded twice prior to Garth Brooks and Taylor Swift, Chesney becomes only the third person to earn the honor.

Peyton Manning was tapped to present Chesney with the award that “recognizes an artist who has achieved global prominence through concert performances and record sales at levels unique in country music.”

“It’s exactly what Kenny has been doing year after year for two decades” Manning says, calling the star a “pinnacle of success” who has sold out a whopping 156 stadium shows while on tour.

Showing a video highlighting his career, a voiceover from Manning relayed the fact that Chesney has scored 40 Top 10 hits, 29 of which have hit No .1, with clips of his many award wins, including Entertainer of the Year, and stars such as Reese Witherspoon and fellow Pinnacle winner Swift congratulating him on the rare honor.

“Kenny Chesney is clearly a superstar that remains at the top of his game,” Manning says in the video.

Receiving a standing ovation from crowd as he walked to stage to get the award, Chesney was moved to tears as called the Pinnacle an “unbelievable honor” and thanked so many for his success including managers Dale Morris and Clint Hingham, Sony Music Nashville CEO Randy Goodman and more.

“To me it means connection with a lot of people,” he says of the award.

He also honored the fans and “heroes” in the audience, saying that those who came before him paved the way for his success. “Thanks for giving me an amazing life,” he told to his fan community, No Shoes Nation.

Chesney has won the CMA Entertainer of the Year Award four times.

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