Tonight I ran across some photos I took of Country and Bluegrass singers/songwriters Joey & Rory Freek. Back in August of 2011 when they performed at the 2011 Oregon Jamboree in Sweet Home Oregon.
Joey + Rory was an American country and bluegrass duo composed of singer-songwriters Rory Lee Feek and Joey Feek , who were husband and wife. Both members of the duo were vocalists and songwriters, with Rory also playing acoustic guitar. Rory Lee Feek had written singles for other artists prior to the duo’s foundation. The duo was the third-place finalist on CMT’s competition Can You Duet in 2008. The duo recorded eight studio albums for Vanguard Records and Farmhouse Recordings and charted three singles on Hot Country Songs.
In May 2014, Joey was diagnosed with cervical cancer. After surgery and treatment, she was declared cancer free and did not receive any radiation or chemotherapy as her surgeons declared the surgery to be a success.
In June 2015, after the family had finished filming their movie, Josephine. Joey was not feeling well again and sought medical advice. After undergoing further medical testing, it was discovered that the cervical cancer had returned and metastasized to her colon. In July, Joey underwent a second surgery to remove a 3-inch tumor (recurrence of cervical cancer) that had invaded her colon and surrounding structures. The surgery was long and involved and required the use of inter-operative radiation as there were tumors the surgeon could not get clear margins on. Still, the medical team was hopeful for Joey’s situation, and she recovered from surgery to continue on to endure an intense round of radiation and chemo in the summer of 2015.
In October 2015, Rory revealed in a blog post that Joey’s cancer was terminal, and they were stopping all treatment as the chemo and radiation she had suffered through for the last few months were not working.
On November 9, 2015, Rory announced via his blog THIS LIFE I LIVE that Joey had entered hospice care and they had decided to focus on living the time that Joey had left and not focus on the doctor’s timeline for her survival.
The couple had reached every milestone that they had realistically set—Christmas and the New Year, Valentine’s Day, the Grammys, and Indiana’s second birthday. Joey passed March 4, 2016. She was 40 years old. Honoring her wishes, Rory held a private funeral on their farm in Tennessee and Joey was buried in the family cemetery on the Feek farm.