The story of Joey Feek and how she died shortly after being diagnosed with cervical cancer is always a sad story when told. As a country singer, Joey was best known as half of the vocal duo Joey + Rory, the other half was her husband Rory Feek.
After years of trying to reach the top of the music industry, Joey finally got her to start in 2008 after becoming a finalist on the CMT music game show Can You Duet. She left indelible records and received both an ACM and a Grammy award.
Joey Feek Bio/Wiki, Family
Joey Feek (née Marie Martin) was born on September 9, 1975, in Alexandria, Indiana, as the third child in a family of five. She has three sisters named Jody, Julie, Jessie and a younger brother Justin (now deceased), all from the same parent’s Jack and June Martin, who were both musicians themselves.
As a child, Joey followed in her parents’ footsteps and began to love singing. With a lot of support from her family, especially her father who played guitar, Joey started performing.
At the age of 6, she made her debut at a first-class talent show. She was singing Dolly Parton’s “Coat of Many Colors. ” Soon to 17 years later, Joey moved to Nashville, Tennessee in 1998 to pursue an acting career, not as a musician but as a veterinarian, which is understandable since she grew up in a farmhouse.
However, her approach to music would connect her to people like Wilbur, the father of country child star LeAnn Rimes, and Kix Brooks.
Joey did not take a big step towards becoming a music star until she met songwriter Rory Feek at the Bluebird Café in Nashville. She married him in 2002 and began working as a backup singer on songs Rory had produced.
She then signed a record deal with Sony and recorded her solo album Strong Enough to Cry in 2005, which unfortunately was not released due to changes in the record company. After her death, the album was renamed If Not For You and released on April 7th, 2017 under Farmhouse Recordings.
Joey’s first taste of fame came in 2008, when she joined the new CMT music show “Can You Duet” with the simple name Joey + Rory at the suggestion of a friend at her husband Rory’s side.
After winning third place, the duo was signed to Sugarhill Vanguard Records, who then produced 3 of their albums. Joey + Rory won the 2010 Academy of Country Music Award for the best vocal duo of the year and was nominated for Top New Artist. The following year they won the Inspirational Country Music Award for the vocal duo.
Joey even received the nominations for the award while in bed. Their song “If I Needed You” in 2016 received a Grammy nomination for Best Country Duo/Group Performance.
Before her death, Joey and her husband recorded their last album together, an album with hymns, “Hymns That Are Important To Us”, which won a Grammy nomination for best roots gospel album in 2017. The album topped the Billboard Country Album Charts and reached number 4 on Billboard 200.
Joey Feek’s Brother – Justin Martin
Joey’s tragic death in March 2016 was not the first death that her family has experienced. The family lost their only son/brother Justin in a car accident in 1994, and after being hit by a car near the family’s farm in Indiana, the poor 17-year-old boy succumbed to his injuries two days later and was laid to rest.
On February 17, 2014, Joey and Rory welcomed their first child, a daughter named Indiana Boon Feek. Days after the birth of the child, however, the couple were greeted with the sad news that their daughter had been diagnosed with Down syndrome. The evil became even worse when Joey was also diagnosed with stage 4 cervical cancer.
In less than a year after the surgeons had declared her cancer-free, Joey fell ill again in June 2015 and the doctors told her that cancer had returned.
In late 2015, Joey was transferred to a hospice and spent the months after her death in her birthplace in Indiana in the care of her family. She took her last breath at 2:30 pm on March 4, 2016, and was buried after a private funeral at Rory’s family’s Feek Farm Cemetery. She was 40 years old.
Joey’s husband Rory documented the days after her cancer diagnosis on camera and in writing, which he shared with fans on his blog. The final piece, entitled “To Joey, With Love”, was shown in cinemas in September 2017. The documentation was continued by a book, which was published in February.
Joey was Rory’s second wife. The Kansas native had two daughters from his previous marriage. They are Heidi Feek (born 1986) and Hopie Feek (born 1988).
Her husband Rory Lee Feek served in the Marines before moving to Nashville in 1995. He also served in the Hall of Fame as an associate of songwriter Harlan Howard and later of Clint Black. He is the owner of Giantslayer Publishing and the record label, which was founded in 2004.
Besides singing, Joey owned a café together with her husband’s sister, Macy. It was called Marcy Jo’s Mealhouse and was located in rural Pottsville, Tennessee.