Oklahoma Athletics Mourns the Loss of Toby Keith
In a heartbreaking moment of tribute, the University of Oklahoma set up a guitar with a red OU solo cup, symbolizing Toby Keith’s signature drinking receptacle, in his usual seat next to athletic director Joe Castiglione during Tuesday night’s Sooners’ men’s basketball game. A moment of silence was held to honor the beloved country music star who passed away at the age of 61.
A Dimmer World Without Toby Keith
Expressing their deep sorrow, Oklahoma Athletics released a statement earlier on Tuesday, paying homage to Keith’s tremendous impact both as an American icon and a loyal supporter of the Sooners. “He brought life and joy to every room he entered, and our hearts are dimmer today without him,” the statement read.
A Music Legend and Fierce Friend
Known for his incredible talent and unwavering friendship, Toby Keith’s contributions to the world of country music were unparalleled. From his breakout hit “Should’ve Been a Cowboy” to chart-toppers like “How Do You Like Me Now?!” and “Beer for My Horses” (a duet with Willie Nelson), Keith’s music resonated with millions around the globe.
A Patriotic Soul
Toby Keith’s love for his country was evident in his songs, particularly “Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue (The Angry American),” which became a powerful anthem following the 9/11 terrorist attacks. He regularly showed support for the military, making 11 USO tours to perform for troops overseas and using his philanthropic efforts to raise funds for servicemen and women.
A Lasting Legacy
Toby Keith’s impact reached far beyond the realm of music. He was a staunch supporter of the University of Oklahoma, faithfully cheering for the Sooners throughout the years. Keith’s generosity and unwavering dedication to his country and his home state will never be forgotten.
Keith’s family has requested privacy during this difficult time, stating that he passed away peacefully on Monday after bravely fighting stomach cancer since June 2022. The world has lost a true talent, but Toby Keith’s music and his spirit will continue to live on in the hearts of fans worldwide.