In June of 2022, hit recording artist Toby Keith shocked the country-music world when he announced that he had been suffering from stomach cancer for the greater part of a year. The announcement came with cancellations of several upcoming live performances. A few months later, Toby signed on to perform at a cancer benefit and had to drop out. Just recently, in November of the same year, Toby made his first public appearance since the announcement. Thankfully, it appears that Toby is doing his best to fight the battle and come out winning. Join Facts Verse as Toby Keith makes his first appearance since stomach cancer diagnosis.
Toby Keith Has Been Suffering from Stomach Cancer
Country-music fans were in for a treat recently when legendary recording artist Toby Keith made his first public appearance since a tragic announcement several years before. In June of 2022, Toby reluctantly spilt the beans to his gigantic fan base that he had been suffering from stomach cancer for several months. Though it appears that Toby is still undergoing his battle with the illness, he’s doing a good deal better than he was during the summer!
Toby Keith is now 61 years old. Being diagnosed with cancer is certainly a tough battle for anybody, but it gets tougher the older you are. When Toby announced in the summer of 2022 that he was suffering from stomach cancer, he claimed that he had been diagnosed with the illness during the fall of 2021. As of June, Toby said that he had been undergoing intensive therapy to fight his stomach cancer for around six months. This intensive therapy included the traditional chemotherapy, as well as some surgeries that were meant to remove the singer’s most tumorous areas. As one might imagine, all of this hasn’t been easy on the country singer.
It probably wasn’t fun for Toby to admit that he was battling stomach cancer, but it was something that the beloved musician felt that he had to do. The announcement came with the cancellation of several performances, which must’ve been disappointing towards fans. Despite this, it seems that everyone and their mother is giving the musician well wishes! If fans were disappointed to learn that Toby had to give up on a few live performances, then they may be pleased to know that the musician is slowly but surely building up his strength to get back out on the road again.
Toby Is Warming Up to the Idea of Performing Again
Toby still isn’t feeling 100%, but it appears that his battle with stomach cancer is going fairly successfully. Just recently, in November of 2022, Toby gave a spontaneous live performance at the restaurant of a longtime friend. That friend was Jeff Ruby, who is the owner of Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse. Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse has a handful of locations across the nation, including ones in Nashville and Cincinnati. However, the location that Toby performed at was the Ruby’s Steakhouse in Lexington, Kentucky.
It appears that Toby Keith and steakhouse-owner Jeff Ruby are longtime friends, and Jeff was present and Toby’s spontaneous performance. During the performance, Toby performed a variety of songs. In addition to performing his own his “I Love This Bar”, the singer also performed some more traditional country-music staples, including “Sweet Home Alabama”. He even did a rendition of Otis Redding’s classic “Sittin’ on the Dock of the Bay”.
Otis Redding died as a result of 1967 plane crash on the soul musician’s own private plane. At the time, the legendary soul musician was only 26 years old. Meanwhile, it appears that the 61-year-old Toby Keith is liable to have several more years in him. That is, so long as his battle with cancer keeps going as successfully as it seems to be going. Jeff Ruby was understandably star-struck on account of country-music legend Toby Keith’s spontaneous live performance at his Lexington steakhouse. Jeff took to social media to post a selfie with the musician, claiming that his steakhouse could make no money that day and he’d still be a happy man.
Toby Was Reluctant to Announce His Cancer Diagnosis
Toby Keith’s announcement that he was suffering from stomach cancer came on a fairly innocuous Sunday in June of 2022. Fans were shocked to learn not only that Toby had been diagnosed with the illness, but that he had been actively fighting it for the better part of the year. Understandably, the country-music demographic has been chomping at the bit for any follow-up news to the announcement, and the fact that Toby is back on his feet performing in any capacity is certainly great news. Toby was 60 years old at the time that he made the announcement to his adoring fans. Around a month later, on July 8, the country musician turned 61. At the time of the announcement, the musician was gearing up to perform a couple of shows.
Toby Keith made his cancer announcement in the early part of June. Around a week later, the singer was scheduled to perform at the Wheaton Ribfest in Wheaton, Illinois. Though Toby didn’t explicitly state during his announcement that he was cancelling all of his upcoming shows, the show at the Wheaton Ribfest didn’t end up happening. It’s easy to imagine that the sight of a bunch of greasy BBQ wouldn’t be something that a stomach-cancer patient would want to see. However, it’s also likely that Toby simply didn’t feel up to performing. Following the planned performance in the Wheaton Ribfest, Toby Keith was set to perform at the Ohio State Fair on July 28. Of course, the Ohio State Fair takes place in Columbus, Ohio. It was the Ohio State Fair itself that came through with the announcement that Toby’s planned performance wasn’t going to be happening.
Soon after Toby Keith’s announcement, his publicist came through with an announcement of her own. That publicist’s name is Elaine Shock. Elaine cleared the air in regards to Toby’s cancelled performance, claiming that many performances were going to be cancelled but she wasn’t sure exactly how many. In September, Toby was set to perform at a cancer benefit. However, he ended up having to cancel. It seems that Toby still needed another month or two before he had enough energy to perform on the stage.
Toby Keith Is No Stranger to the Cancer Struggle
Toby Keith wasn’t just meant to perform at the upcoming cancer benefit, but he was also set to receive a lifetime achievement award! Many people may not know that Toby Keith actually has a long history with cancer, stemming back to long before his recent stomach-cancer diagnosis. Over the course of his career, Toby has founded two separate non-profit organizations that are meant to support those battling with cancer. In 2004, Toby founded a non-profit organization by the name of Ally’s House in his home state of Oklahoma. Some may wonder why Toby took it upon himself to open up a non-profit organization for cancer patients. As it turns out, the inspiration for the musician doing so was the death of one of his bandmate’s sons as a result of the illness.
The founding of Ally’s House in Oklahoma was only the first step for the incredibly charitable Toby Keith. A few years later, in 2006, the musician founded a second non-profit organization by the name of the Toby Keith Foundation. The cancer benefit that Toby was meant to perform at in September of 2022 was put on by an organization by the name of SabeWings, and it was called the 2022 Strike Out Event. The reason that Toby was set to earn a lifetime achievement award at the benefit was because of his longtime work with the Toby Keith Foundation.
Though Toby Keith wasn’t able to show up and perform at the 2022 Strike Out Event, SabeWings still awarded the country-music legend with his lifetime achievement award via a proxy. Toby also recorded an acceptance speech for the event, which played after he was given his award. Toby was incredibly sad that he couldn’t perform at the benefit, but it’s likely that there will be many more benefits to come! Given that the musician seems to be slowly but surely getting back into the swing of things, it’s easy to assume that he might be getting his mojo back completely pretty soon.
Toby Keith Has Been a Country-Music Staple for Decades
Toby Keith has been a staple in the country-music scene for nearly three decades. In 1993, the musician took the world by storm when he released his debut album. That debut album was called Should’ve Been a Cowboy, and it was released on April 20. The debut single from the album was a song of the same name, which became the musicians first big hit. Since breaking out onto the country-music scene, Toby has sold over 40 million albums. The musician has also had around 20 number-one hits on country radio. The musician released his latest album in October of 2021. For those paying attention to the dates, this means that the album was released around the same time that Toby received his cancer diagnosis. That album was called Peso in My Pocket, and it’s lead single was called “Oklahoma Breakdown”, and it became a pretty big hit.
Though Toby Keith scared fans in the summer of 2022 when he announced the he was suffering from stomach cancer, it seems that the musician is slowly but surely coming out on top in his battle. Now it’s time to hear from you: did you know that Toby Keith recently received a lifetime achievement award for his work with his cancer non-profit, and that the musician founded the organization long before being diagnosed with cancer himself? Comment down below!