Country Singer Joey Feek Dies After Cancer Battle: ‘She Is in Heaven’
Carrie Underwood and Blake Shelton have led the tributes to fellow country star Joey Feek, who lost her battle with cancer on Friday.
The 40-year-old singer, one half of country duo Joey + Rory, died at her home in Alexandria, Indiana, her bandmate and husband Rory Feek revealed in an emotional blog post on Friday.
“My wife’s greatest dream came true today,” he wrote. “She is in Heaven. The cancer is gone, the pain has ceased and all her tears are dry.”
Feek had been battling cervical cancer since 2014 and after relapsing last year, she learned her condition was terminal. She halted her medical treatments in October and managed to hold on for more than four months as she spent one last Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year with her family, and also lived to see their daughter Indiana turn two on February 17.
After the news broke, Carrie Underwood shared her grief with fans on Twitter, writing, “Praying for the family & friends of Joey Feek. A beautiful soul moved into heaven today. A beautiful legacy she left behind. @joeyandrory.”
Blake Shelton posted, “So sad to hear about Joeys (sic) passing,” while LeAnn Rimes Cibrian added, “Such sad news of Joey Feek passing. So many prayers for her family and friends. What a beautiful soul @joeyandrory.”
Singer Chris Young shared memories of playing music with Feek, writing on Twitter, “Thoughts, prayers, and condolences to the Feek family. Have played shows with Joey and Rory before and it’s so sad to lose her amazing voice.”
Joey + Rory’s song “If I Needed You” was nominated for the Best Country Duo/group Performance Grammy last month, and officials at the Recording Academy took the time to send out a touching message to the Feek family.
“We are so very saddened to learn of the passing of Joey Feek. Our thoughts are with her family, friends, and fans today,” they tweeted.
In the blog post that announced his wife’s passing on Friday, Rory shared footage of Joey watching a video message from her idol, Dolly Parton, who had reached out to the ailing singer back in November.
“Joey and Rory, I’ve loved you for years,” Parton said in the video. “Joey, I just want you to know that I really appreciate the fact that you’ve often done my songs, talked about me at different times.
“I’ve heard that you’re a big fan. Well, I want you to know I appreciate that and I want you to know I’m sorry that you’re not feeling well. But I know we have something in common. We both believe in a higher power. We believe that through God, all things are possible.
“So you keep praying, and I’ll keep praying for you. I just think that you’re wonderful and I know that God’s proud of you. I just wanted to take a chance to say thank you for loving me, and I’ll be loving you.”
The duo formed in 2008 and competed on TV talent show Can You Duet in 2008, when they placed third. They subsequently landed a record deal with Sugar Hill Records, through which they released their debut album, The Life of a Song.
They went on to release six more studio projects, including Hymns That Are Important to Us, which made chart history in February when Joey + Rory became the first act to top both the U.S. Christian and Country Albums charts since Alabama managed the feat in 2006 with Songs of Inspiration.