ALEXANDRIA, Ind. -- Country music singer Joey Feek died Friday after a battle with cervical and colon cancer. She was 40.
In a blog post Friday, Rory wrote, "My wife's greatest dream came true today. She is in heaven. The cancer is gone, the pain has ceased and all her tears are dry. Joey is in the arms of her beloved brother Justin and using her pretty voice to sing for her savior. At 2:30 this afternoon, as we were gathered around her, holding hands and praying, my precious bride breathed her last. And a moment later took her first breath on the other side."
Saddened to hear of the loss of courageous Hoosier Joey Feek. Karen & I send our thoughts/prayers to her family, friends & fans @joeyandrory
— Governor Mike Pence (@GovPenceIN) March 4, 2016
Feek was diagnosed in May 2014 with cervical cancer, just a few months after the birth of her daughter, Indiana. The cancer was removed with surgery, but it returned a few months later.
Feek was part of a country singing group with her husband, Rory, named “Joey + Rory.” They were based out of Tennessee.
In November 2015, Joey and Rory moved back to Alexandria after deciding to end treatments when the tumors re-appeared. Joey’s family is from Alexandria.
The small Madison County community remembered her performing at the local 4-H fairs.
"She's a hometown girl," said Alexandria resident Lindsey Conuneo at the time. "She's got an unforgettable voice. When you hear it you know it's her."
In late November, Rory wrote about his and Joey’s last dance together, in her mother’s living room:
A few days ago, on the last day Joey walked, I took her in my arms in the living room and once more put her hand in mine and we danced. She steadied with her cane and I softly moved her across the room singing George Strait’s “You Look So Good In Love” in her ear. In the middle of the song though, as I was being careful not to step on her toes – she stopped and looked up at me and said, “How about if I lead?’. And I followed her lead as we slowly two-stepped on her mama’s living room floor.
At the time, Joey’s family believed she wouldn’t be able to walk again. But about a month later, she was able to walk around her house and spend time with Indiana.
Joey made an impact on many people in the state, including those in the statehouse. Both Joey and Rory were given a Sagamore of the Wabash award for their “Hoosier values,” according to Rep. Bruce Borders, who was one of two representatives presenting the award to the couple.
“Important Hoosier values, such as loving others, serving one’s country, following one’s dreams, and showcasing grace and joy during difficult times — have all been exhibited by Joey and Rory,” Borders said.
Joey and Rory also celebrated Indiana’s second birthday on Feb. 17. In a blog post they wrote, "Some birthdays are more than just birthdays. They're dreams coming true and prayers being answered."
While Joey was in hospice, Joey and Rory were nominated for a Grammy Award for their song "If I Needed You."
The Grammys were decided Feb. 15. Joey and Rory didn’t win one. The lyrics of "If I Needed You" are:
"If I needed you
Would you come to me
Would you come to me
For to ease my pain
If you needed me
I would come to you
I would swim the sea
For to ease your pain"