After a two-year fight against cancer, Joey Feek, of the country duo Joey + Rory, died Friday, March 4th, at the age of 40. Feek was diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2014, and spent the last few weeks in full-time hospice care, with husband Rory not only looking after his wife, but chronicling their experience in an emotional online diary.
Yesterday, Rory broke the news that Joey had died. "At 2:30 this afternoon, as we were gathered around her, holding hands and praying. . .my precious bride breathed her last," he wrote on his blog This Life I Live. "She is in Heaven. The cancer is gone. The pain has ceased. And all her tears are dry."
Champions of country's more traditional sounds — Rory even had "We Miss Country Music" scrawled on his guitar — Joey + Rory competed on the CMT singing competition Can You Duet in 2008. Although they didn't win, the high-profile appearance helped them launch a recording career that culminated in their first Number One album just last month. Hymns That Are Important to Us, a collection of gospel songs and prayers, debuted atop both the Country Albums and Christian Albums charts.
Prior to Joey Feek's death, the couple also celebrated milestones both personal and professional: the second birthday of their daughter Indiana, a Grammy nomination and an Academy of Country Music Awards nomination for Vocal Duo of the Year.