Joey Feek and Rory Feek are a country music duo who have also become known for their courage amid her battle with terminal cancer. Diagnosed with stage IV cervical cancer in 2014, Joey went into hospice care in November 2015. With Rory and their 23-month-old daughter, Indiana, to share her final days, Feek has been bravely struggling to stay positive, and Rory has been sharing their love story, faith, and courage amid heartbreak in his blog, reported Us Weekly.
In his most recent post, Feek recalled the couple’s country music past, including how they decided to audition for Can You Duet, a reality music competition on CMT, in 2008. And that’s how the name of the duo, Joey + Rory, was born. But that plus sign has special meaning for Feek.
“When we found out we had made it through the first round of auditions, they asked us what our stage name was going to be. I told Joey that I think we should tell them ‘Joey+Rory’, because that’s what it actually was … You + Me = whatever this is going to be.”
Now, after 13 years together, Joey and Rory seek to hold onto their faith and their love amid the knowledge that their time left together is short.
“Without knowing it, what we were actually adding into the equation that day in 2008… was God,” emphasized Feek. “It was faith that we added – a willingness to trust Him and be OK with whatever He had in store. I think that’s where the power is. There’s nothing magical about Joey and I together. We bring our skills and talents into this union, but God brings the magic.”
Trying to envision life without Joey, however, brings heartache for Feek. The musician admitted that trying to foresee his life as he raises their little girl Indy without his wife, or heading home to Tennessee without Joey, is heartbreaking.
“But chances are, that day is coming,” acknowledged Rory. “Joey and I both have questions. Lots of them. Hard questions that we don’t have any answers for. But still, we have faith – we choose to believe. I think that’s why they call it faith. If we knew all the answers, no faith would be required. And so Joey and I do our best each day to only see the plus’s in our life.”
Grammy Nomination For Joey + Rory Brightens Their Life
In addition to the past, Feek shared his joy at the Grammy nomination letter the couple recently received in his blog. Seeing the name of the duo highlighted the meaning of the “plus” in their stage name.
“Seeing our names listed on the Grammy nomination certificate we received recently, I found myself thinking a lot about the ‘plus-sign‘ in-between our names and why we chose not to use a ‘&’ sign or a ‘and,'” noted Rory.
Feek told ET that he and Joey are honored to be included in the list of Grammy nominees.
“When you love country music as much as we do, to even be nominated for a Grammy for Best Duo/Group Country Vocal Performance is like winning the lottery,” added Feek.
Others nominated in the same category include Blake Shelton and Ashley Monroe; Charles Kelley, Dierks Bentley, and Eric Paslay; Brothers Osborne; and Little Big Town.
Sometimes happiness is a warm puppy. So when some teeny-tiny puppies arrived to visit Joey and Rory’s daughter Indiana, it was Joey who seemed to get the most joy from their furry friendliness, reported Taste of Country.
“…some baby puppies came to play with Indy the other day, but I think her mama loved their visit the most,” wrote Feek for the caption.
In addition to sharing their love story, Joey and Rory have created a final album together, Hymns That Are Important to Us, set to be released next month.
“A lot has taken place in a year’s time, but through it all, these songs have given me such strength,” said Joey about the hymns.
Hymns Album Details
Hymns That Are Important To Us will be available February 12 both at Cracker Barrel Old Country Store locations and online.
— Cracker Barrel (@CrackerBarrel) January 25, 2016
Included in the CD package will be photos of the Feeks, their family, tales from Rory’s blog, and more.
“Joey and I feel blessed to partner with Cracker Barrel for the deluxe package of our new hymns album,” emphasized Feek. “These songs of faith and hope mean so much to us, and to have them wrapped within intimate stories and photos from our lives is a dream come true. We are both big fans of the restaurant, and our family has held hands and said blessings over many meals there throughout the years.”
[Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images]