LAUREN LAFFER • Sounds Like Nashville
On Sunday (3/13), friends and family of Joey Feek gathered to say goodbye in her old high school gym in Alexandria, Indiana.
In an eight-minute speech, the late singer’s husband and duet partner, Rory, stepped up to the stage to talk about his wife’s incredible capacity to love.
“I’m here to tell you that it’s possible to experience the kind of love you see in movies. All you have to do is give that kind of love first … I’m not talking about myself,” Feek said, explaining that “when [Joey] came into my life, I saw what love really looks like.”
“Joey just didn’t learn the secret recipe for love; she sought it out,” he continued. “Not in others or self-help books or marriage conferences, but in our Lord — in his example and his words … and when he told her how to do it, like He loves us, she did her best to do it to the end of the line.”
He also explained how his blog, This Life I Live, came to be. It was at the encouragement of Joey during a time where he “felt the need to document the coming months and remember them.”
“Joey and I believed that God would give us a great story. Not just a great story to tell, but a great story to live, and he has …,” Feek said. “A great story is not just a happy story filled with only joy. That’s not a story, not really. You must have low points to understand and appreciate the high points that you get to experience in life.”
When telling his wife he’d do anything to take her place, Joey simply smiled. He said that she told him, “But if it was you, there would be no one here to write about it, so I will live it, and you will share it.” And when Feek asked his wife if she ever worried about her family’s life after her death, “Again, she just tenderly smiled and said, ‘No, honey. God has given us a great story. And I have every reason to believe that he will continue doing the same.’”
Rory then took some time to thank their family, friends, the city of Alexandria, and the people who have watched their story around the world. He concluded by thanking his wife…
“… Lastly, I want to thank my beautiful bride, Joey, for choosing me and giving me the greatest gift that I’ve ever had: her love,” Feek concluded. “She may have played basketball and volleyball in this gym, and I may be wearing her jacket, but what she lettered in was love.”
He received a standing ovation as he walked offstage.
Joey was laid to rest last Tuesday, March 8 in what Rory described as “an afternoon filled with so much joy and love.” She passed away after a long battle with Stage IV cervical cancer.
In lieu of flowers, the family is asking for donations to be sent to the following address:
Joey and Indy
P.O. Box 5471
Vancouver, WA 98668