Toby Keith, country singer-songwriter, dies at 62 after stomach cancer diagnosis

Toby Keith, a hit country crafter of pro-American anthems who both riled up critics and was loved by millions of fans, has died. He was 62.

The “Should’ve Been a Cowboy” singer-songwriter, who had stomach cancer, died peacefully Monday surrounded by his family, according to a statement posted on the country singer’s website.

“He fought his fight with grace and courage,” the statement said. He announced his cancer diagnosis in 2022.

The 6-foot-4 singer broke out in the country boom years of the 1990s, writing songs that fans loved to hear.

Over his career he publicly clashed with other celebrities and journalists and often pushed back against record executives who wanted to smooth his rough edges.

He was known for his overt patriotism on post 9/11 songs like “Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue,” and boisterous barroom tunes like

“I Love This Bar” and “Red Solo Cup.” He had a powerful booming voice, a tongue-in-cheek sense of humor and range that carried love songs as well as drinking songs.