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Rory Feek Embracing Life, Opportunities One Year After Joey’s Death

Saturday (March 4) marks one year since Joey + Rory singer Joey Martin Feek lost her battle with cancer. Her husband, Rory Feek, has charged forward, carrying out her wishes and dreams and finding new successes.

At the 2016 CMA Awards, Rory told Taste of Country it was a little strange receiving so many honors after the death of his wife, but not because of the timing. The couple just never really bought into the pageantry, so it’s new to him. Dove Awards, Inspirational Country Awards, CMA nominations and a Grammy Award have kept the 51-year-old moving through press lines. He’s handled interviews graciously, with almost an eagerness to carry on his wife’s legacy.

After the Grammys, Rory flew to New York City to do press for his new book, This Life I Live. It’s his second major release in the 12 months after Joey’s passing. He also released the movie To Joey, With Love in the fall. A few weeks before she died, their Hymns That Are Important To Us album was released, which would go on to be nominated and win a Grammy Award.

A glance at Rory’s This Life I Live blog makes it clear his daughter, Indiana, is still his top priority. The little girl just celebrated her third birthday, and recently learned how to walk unassisted. She has Down syndrome, and Rory says he knows there are challenges to come, especially without a mother. When asked how he plans to stay ahead of those challenges, he gave a surprising answer.

“I don’t know, I’m not there yet,” he says. “I know she’s 2-and-a-half and she’s filled with joy. I think there will come a time where I will help her. But right now, she’s doing all the heavy lifting.”

Joey + Rory were a country duo that enjoyed commercial success beginning in 2008. While never hitmakers, their writing and friendship was cherished in the country community. After backing away from mainstream country music, they began to record Christian and gospel music. Joey battled cancer for nearly two years, ultimately choosing to end treatment and accept God’s will. Rory documented the journey with few filters at his This Life I Live blog.

Beautiful Photos of Joey + Rory

Watch: 5 Unforgettable Joey + Rory Songs

Next: Country Stars Who've Suffered Tragedy

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