The newly crowned CMT Artist of a Lifetime, Randy Travis, just penned an emotional tribute to his longtime friend Garth Brooks.
Travis shared a series of photos of himself alongside Brooks, Trisha Yearwood and his wife, Mary, with a lengthy caption dedicated to Brooks.
“When my last silent prayer is said, I’ll thank God for @garthbrooks in my life,” Travis began.
He went on to reflect on his life and his relationship with the fellow superstar, writing:
Our lives are like a mountain range — each a separate mountain, a different elevation, a different climb to the top, with different views — but it takes them all to make a range. The higher you go, the more you see, the greater the rush, the harder the fall. I’ve had my share of it all. Now, I have the chance to glance back on ones that made my climb better, easier and more worthwhile.
Garth Brooks came along right behind me and kept cheering me on as he climbed his own ‘taller’ mountain! I’m so glad one was near the other. I’m on the other side of my mountain, so we don’t see each other as much; but, never a day goes by that I doubt Garth is still there for me — telling the world now, what he told me back then.
It took us all to get us where we are — to see what we saw, and do what we did — and what a beautiful range we made! Thank you, Garth, for the time you always take from your climb, to check on me and share your kind words with the world about what I meant to you. I may have helped bring our genre back to life, but you taught it how to live!
He closed the touching note with a message to Brooks and Yearwood.
“God bless you and @trishayearwood, always, as y’all have blessed multitudes, daily,” he shared. “I love ya’, Brother.”
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The emotional letter comes just days after Brooks presented Travis with the Artist of a Lifetime honor at the star-studded 2021 CMT Artists of the Year special.
“I said this before, and I’ll say it again, Randy Travis single-handedly saved country music,” Brooks declared.
He went on to admit, “I wouldn’t be standing here if it wasn’t for Randy Travis.”
As Travis and his wife, Mary, looked on, Brooks shared, “Every artist that takes the stage over the next hundred years should bow to this man and thank him for his contribution… Artists like this guy only come once in a lifetime.”
Travis made his way to the stage with Mary by his side. He officially accepted the trophy as Mary shared a touching message on his behalf.
“As Randy would say, and I think he said it before, It’s a pretty good night for me,” she said.
“After listening to these artists tonight and these artists tonight and these uplifting songs and the great sounds that are coming from them. Thank you so much for following in the footsteps because we fully expect to see y’all up here one day, celebrating you as Artist of a Lifetime,” she told the artists in the room.
As she continued to speak for Travis, who nodded along throughout the speech, Mary said, “The stroke may’ve taken the voice, but it didn’t take the man, and it didn’t take the heart.
You know what else it didn’t take? The music, well have that forever and ever, amen.”
Closing the speech, Mary thanked God, the city of Nashville, Warner, Kyle, his writers, his team and his fans.
Past recipients of the Artists of a Lifetime honor include Reba McEntire (2019), Loretta Lynn (2018), Shania Twain (2016), Kenny Rogers (2015) and Merle Haggard (2014).