When Joey Feek lost her battle with cancer at the age of 40 on March 4, she left a legacy of courage, faith, love, and strength, shared by her husband Rory Feek. They shared their passion for their musical career as the country duo Joey + Rory as well as their deep love for each other. Now raising their little girl Indiana, 2, on his own, Rory laid his wife to rest during a private service for the Feek family and their friends, reported Us Weekly.
But Joey is not forgotten, immortalized in the music that she and Feek created, as well as in his blog and social media posts.
When she died after nine months of struggling with stage IV cancer, Joey had lived a life devoted to those close to her, said a rep for the country duo.
“Joey was known for her beautiful voice, beautiful smile and beautiful marriage partnership with Rory Feek. Together they shared a life built around a love of faith, family, farming and country music….Joey found the real meaning and joys of life to be one of love for her GOD, love for her home and family, love for planting and growing and love for sharing with everyone she knew. Her roles as wife and mother are often heralded beyond her celebrity successes.”
The Feek family has asked that in lieu of flowers, donations are sent to Joey and Indy at PO Box 5471 Vancouver, WA 98668.
Although the funeral service was private for the Feek family, a memorial service for Joey will be open to the public. Bill Gaither, a close friend for years to the family, as well as the Feek duo’s record producer, told ET about the funeral and plans for the memorial service.
The Tennessee farm where Joey was laid to rest belonged to the couple, with her wooden casket borne by a carriage and a horse.
“The service was pure Joey,” shared Bill. “It was all about her and her relationship to people, and to her family and the earth.”
Now, as final plans are made for her Sunday memorial service for Joey’s friends, family, and neighbors, Bill reflected on why her hometown is the ideal place to pay tribute for the last time to the country singer.
“[Alexandria] is where she was born,” he clarified. “It’s where she went to grade school, church with her mother, father, four sisters and brother. It’s where she went to high school, played basketball and showed horses at the yearly county fair.”
In remembering her legacy, Bill also shared his insights into the marriage that she and Rory shared with so much love, pointing out that Rory and Joey faced death with incredible courage.
“Death is a hard process, but to see [Joey] and Rory face death with grace and dignity, it was an encouragement to anybody. Their story is kind of like one from [Charles] Dickens: ‘It was the best of times; it was the worst of times.’ Boy, they lived that story and they lived it beautifully.”
As for Rory, he is seeking to help their daughter Indiana flourish. Born with Down syndrome, 2-year-old Indiana was just enrolled in a special needs school, and Feek has not hesitated to move on by caring for his little girl, added Bill.
“I saw Rory the day after the funeral and asked, ‘How was the first day of the rest of your life?'” Bill recalled. “And he said, ‘The first thing I did was take our daughter to this special needs school.'”
In her final days, Joey sought to share her love and send a special message to Rory and Indiana, reported MSN.
“One of the last things Joey said is ‘I have no regrets. I can honestly say that I have done everything I wanted to do and lived the life I always wanted to live,'” recalled Rory.
And Feek revealed her last words to the 2-year-old.
“You be a big girl for your papa…mama will be watching over you,” shared the heartbroken husband.
[Image via This Life I Live]