Dunnell has been in the public eye singing Country Music & Oldies Rock'n'Roll since 1981 . He has performed at county fairs as well as other events in Southern Minnesota and Northern Iowa. He has sang at Jackpot Junction Casino in Morton MN as well as performed on the stage of the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, TN. He currently resides in Twin Lakes, MN with his wife Angie.
Dunnell James Lenort was born on July 22,1961 at Wells Munincipal Hospital in Wells, MN. He was the first born of five children to Jim & Jeanette Lenort of Walters, MN. Life struck a cruel blow when at the tender age of eight month's Dunnell developed a high fever. Despite desperate attempts to break the fever, a blood vessel broke in Dunnell's head and paralized his right arm and leg. It was unheard of at that time for children of that age to get strokes, so Dunnell's condition was classified as cerebral palsy. For the next twenty plus years he would be going to Gillettes Children's Hospital in the Twin Cities. There he would undergo many surgeries to correct various problems with his arm and leg. Even tho life had thrown the young lad a curve, there was one thing that would keep his spirits up -- MUSIC. Dunnell had a love for music at age five. After hearing Johnny Cash on the home stereo, Dunnell knew that music is what he wanted to do.
Dunnell went 4 years of grade school in Walters and finished up his education at Kiester-Walters High in Kiester, MN where he graduated in 1980.
Sister Kenny Institute asked him to sing at their Minnesota State Fair booth for the "Year of the Disabled" in 1981. It was also about this time that KEYC-TV out of Mankato, MN did a Thanksgiving feature on Dunnell. Not being able to find band members to form a band, Dunnell stumbled across an ad for instrumental background music. After singing with them for a number of years in supper clubs, service clubs, company parties and community events, he then got the chance to join up with The Strangers Band who played various gigs around the Austin, MN area. After performing with them for several years, the band broke up. Finding himself back to where he first started, Dunnell began to sing with the soundtracks again. He soon found it hard to make a steady living performing so the Walters native decided to go to Austin Vocational School for Radio/TV Broadcasting. He graduated with an Associate of Applied Science Degree from Austin College in Austin, MN.
Throughout the years Dunnell has kept performing at various events. He had the thrill of being the opening act for Roy Clark at the Surf Ballroom where Dunnell performed with the band Southern Streamline.
The year 2008 was a rough year for Dunnell & Angie. In February the couple found out that Angie had brain cancer and she underwent surgery to remove the tumor at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN. Things were going well when in June they were involved in a automobile accident where Dunnell suffered pelvic fractures and Angie had a plate put in her leg. After spending about three weeks in the hospital Angie was released from the Methodist Hospital in Rochester. While on the mend from the accident, another setback... in September their was swelling starting to develop in Angie's brain. So, another surgery was performed to relieve the swelling.
Despite the hardships of '08, Dunnell & Angie are doing well and are still on the mend. They both wish to thank everyone who has supported them.