Randy Travis advocates for stroke victims in Tennessee

 

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Country star Randy Travis met with Tennessee lawmakers to raise awareness for stroke victims following his near-fatal stroke in 2013.

Travis was at the state Capitol on Wednesday, hours before he was to be feted at a tribute concert in Nashville, featuring Garth Brooks, Kenny Rogers and others.

Travis lost the use of his right side, as well as the ability to read, write and speak. But his wife, Mary, told a Senate Health Committee that he has improved greatly following years of rehabilitation.

The Grammy winner went through two brain surgeries and was in the hospital for five and a half months, but Travis surprised everyone at his Country Music Hall of Fame induction last year when he sang “Amazing Grace.”

She said last week her husband read the word “Nashville” on a highway sign, the first time since the stroke that he indicated he could read again.

“We’ve come a long way now,” Mary Travis said. “I guess I speak to the family members and the medical field who are challenged with stroke patients to not ever give up.”

Travis’ multi-platinum debut album, “Storms of Life,” in 1986 made him a star with his deep baritone voice. He had hits with songs like “Forever and Ever Amen,” ”Three Wooden Crosses” and “On the Other Hand.”