Multi-platinum-selling country star Scotty McCreery was presented with the Randy Owen Angels Among Us Award by the Alabama lead singer himself during the closing event for this year’s Country Cares Seminar in Memphis, TN.
On Oct. 8, McCreery stepped on stage to accept the award that represents a country artist’s commitment and service to the mission of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Past recipients of the Angels Among Us award include Randy Owen, Florida Georgia Line, Lady A, Jake Owen, Brad Paisley, Darius Rucker, and industry leaders Lon Helton and Bill Mayne.
“I gotta say, first and foremost, this is such an honor,” he began in his acceptance speech. “I mean, there’s lot of awards out there that would be cool to win, but this right here kind of stands alone. I think for me, well before I got started in country music, my folks instilled in me the desire to impact people in a positive way. I’ve wanted to do that through my music since I got started and to do that, you have to align yourself with like-minded people, you gotta align yourself with like-minded organizations, and people that are impacting folks in a positive way. St. Jude, y’all are at the top of that list.”
“Thank y’all for being here tonight,” McCreery continued. “Randy, thank you for bringing this country music family together so we can all come together and support St. Jude and their wonderful mission. St. Jude, thank you for your mission in helping these kids, these families here in Memphis, here in this country, and all around the world. Y’all are doing amazing work. Proud to get this award.”
Country music artists and industry professionals came together during the annual gathering to honor McCreery and learn how to help raise funds and continue to spread awareness for St. Jude. Owen first co-founded Country Cares over 30 years ago and in 2021, his vision helped to raise nearly $50 million for St. Jude.
According to a recent press release, “The continued support from the country music community helps fuel the current six-year, $12.9 billion St. Jude strategic plan to accelerate research and treatment for childhood catastrophic diseases.”
McCreery is among many others who have given their time to help reach these goals and to relieve the tremendous amount of stress in parents who come to St. Jude to get treatment for their child with cancer. The families of those admitted to the hospital never have to pay a dime and because of it, they’re able to focus on healing together and supporting their child through the tough times.
“I think one of my first times coming out here was the first, or maybe one of the first times, I got to meet Randy. Just an amazing guy with a humongous heart, and I think he’s done such, obviously, we all know, an amazing job of getting the country music family and St. Jude together and made this what it is today, all these years later,” McCreery shared.
Since 2014, the American Idol alum and his wife Gabi have dedicated countless hours to sharing the mission of St. Jude. Not only have they visited the Memphis, TN campus over the years, but they have also appeared on “Celebrity Family Feud,” donated their $25,000 winnings to the institution, and supported several St. Jude campaigns. He has even gotten his fans involved in giving back.
Sitting down with Country Now and other media outlets, the “Five More Minutes” singer shared his unforgettable first experience getting to tour the St. Jude campus.
“It’s been a long time since the first time in the hospital and I’ll never forget the ride over, and just kind of being nervous. I had been to a few hospitals at that point, Children’s hospitals, and it could kind of be a sad experience, and that’s what I was expecting,” McCreery began. “These kids and these families are going through unimaginable things, it’s so tough that they’re having to go through that, but we got in the hospital that day and somehow, some way, St. Jude had smiles on these kid’s faces and smiles on the family’s faces. I was thinking, ‘man, how in the world are there smiles with, you know, the tough things they’re going through.’”
He added, “as I’ve worked with St. Jude over the years, I realized just how much they care for these families and these kids and the research they’re doing that they don’t wanna make a dime off of. They wanna share it with the world ‘cause it’s all one common goal that we’re all trying to help here with cancer research. So, it was kind of that first experience of the hospital that I was thinking, ‘man, this is a place that I wanna support for long time.’”
The incredible work of St. Jude holds even more importance for the singer now that he and Gabi are expecting their first child in early November.
“I think for me, I’m just noticing more things when it comes to kids. I’m noticing strollers that parents are using going through Walmart and just the little things, like how they’re dealing with babies on a plane. So I think for me, whether it’s going to the hospital or seeing the St. Jude commercials or knowing the work that St. Jude is doing in general, through my experience. Then being a dad and in five weeks now, I think I’m gonna be that much more passionate about supporting them and wanting to help these families going through that cause I can’t imagine it.”
After accepting his award, he took a spot in front of the crowd in between Owen and Craig Morgan. Together, they took turns performing a few fan-favorites and for their last song, they joined forces to sing one of Alabama’s most popular songs, “Angels Among Us.” This heartwarming track touched the hearts of everyone in attendance, just like it did for fans when it was first released in 1993 from the band’s album Cheap Seats.
“Receiving the Randy Owen Angel Among Us Award from Randy Owen himself is an honor I will never forget. Had a blast performing with him and Craig Morgan. What a night!!,” McCreery wrote in a recent Facebook post.
McCreery went on to share that seeing the smiles on the St. Jude patients over the years says a lot about the hard work that they are doing and he is happy to be a part of that.
“I think that’s the best testimony you can get, when you’re at a meet and greet and this family comes up and they’re telling you about their experience at St. Jude and how positive it was. That’s why it reinforces, you know, every year why I want to keep supporting St. Jude.”
Although he is preparing for his upcoming dad duties to take over, Scotty McCreery also revealed that he will be opening for the legendary country band, Alabama, on Dec. 9 in Virginia.