Country music singer Toby Keith died on Monday, February 5. He was battling stomach cancer since 2022 and died at the age of 62. The news was shared by his family through an official statement posted on the singer’s X handle.
On Tuesday, February 6, an official statement was shared which read, “Toby Keith passed peacefully last night on February 5th surrounded by his family. He fought his fight with grace and courage. Please respect the privacy of his family at this time (sic).”
Keith’s family confirmed the death on social media, writing that the musician “passed peacefully” on Feb. 5 and was “surrounded by his family.” “He fought his fight with grace and courage,” they wrote. The statement did not mention a cause of death.
Keith revealed his illness to fans in 2022 but was actually diagnosed a year earlier. In the months that followed the diagnosis he underwent treatment including chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery, and dialed back his performing schedule. In summer of 2023, he made his return to the stage with a pair of pop-up bar shows in his hometown of Norman, Oklahoma. That fall, Keith gave his first television performance since his diagnosis, singing “Don’t Let the Old Man In,” the tale of mortality he wrote for Clint Eastwood’s 2018 film The Mule, at the inaugural People’s Choice Country Awards in Nashville.
Keith looked emaciated on stage during the Oscars, despite having a powerful voice. He made a joke, saying, “I bet you all never thought you’d see me in skinny jeans.” It was a far cry from the big, loud Toby Keith that had barnstormed country music in the decades before, a man who commanded attention on concert stages while wearing jeans, a straw cowboy hat, and flannel shirts, many with the sleeves cut off. He embodied the entirety of his moniker, “Big Dog Daddy.”