What Type of Cancer Did Toby Keith Have?

Toby Keith, the famous country music singer known for patriotic anthems and party songs, revealed in June 2022 that he had been battling stomach cancer. Keith was diagnosed with the disease at the end of 2021.

Over the next two years, Keith underwent treatment but ultimately passed away from the disease on February 5, 2024 at the age of 62. He was surrounded by his family when he died peacefully at his home.

Initial Diagnosis and Treatment

In June 2022, when Keith first disclosed his cancer diagnosis, he said that he had already undergone multiple treatments:

“I’ve spent the last 6 months receiving chemo, radiation and surgery. So far, so good. I need time to breathe, recover and relax.”

The singer did not provide further details at the time regarding the type of stomach cancer he had or his prognosis. However, the fact that Keith had surgery in addition to chemotherapy and radiation indicates that he likely had an advanced stage of disease requiring aggressive treatment.

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Keith’s Ongoing Cancer Battle

Later in 2022, Keith offered another brief update that his cancer fight was taking its toll:

“It’s pretty debilitating, but I’m still up and around.”

Keith courageously continued performing, including headlining two shows in Las Vegas in December 2022. Those concerts were billed as “rehab shows” to help him regain his strength and stamina after cancer had weakened him significantly.

Toby Keith’s Death from Stomach Cancer

The official statement released by Keith’s family announcing his passing provided little additional detail regarding his medical situation:

“He fought his fight with grace and courage.”

The notice simply said that Keith had died while at home surrounded by loved ones on February 5, 2024.

Based on the timeline, Keith battled stomach cancer for over two years before ultimately succumbing to the disease at just 62 years old.

Stomach Cancer Facts and Statistics

Stomach cancer, sometimes referred to as gastric cancer, develops in the tissues lining the inside of the stomach. Here are some key facts about this disease:

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Incidence and Mortality

  • Approximately 26,000 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with stomach cancer each year
  • It causes about 11,000 deaths annually, making it the 15th most common cause of cancer death
  • Stomach cancer is more common in men than women
  • The average age at diagnosis is 68 years old

Risk Factors

  • H. pylori bacterial infection of the stomach
  • Smoking tobacco
  • Diet high in smoked or salted foods
  • Genetic predisposition in some families
  • Obesity


  • Indigestion or heartburn
  • Abdominal pain or discomfort
  • Feeling excessively full after eating
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Loss of appetite and unintended weight loss

Diagnosis and Staging

  • Endoscopy to take stomach tissue biopsies
  • Imaging tests like CT scans to see tumor size and spread
  • Blood tests to analyze tumor markers

Stomach cancer is divided into stages based on the extent of spread:

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StageDefinition5-Year Survival Rate
Stage 0Cancer confined to inner stomach lining>95%
Stage 1Cancer spread to middle or outer stomach lining71%
Stage 2Cancer spread to muscles outside stomach46%
Stage 3Cancer spread to nearby lymph nodes29%
Stage 4Cancer metastasized to distant organs5%

As shown in the table, early detection and diagnosis of stomach cancer leads to better chances for successful treatment and survival.


In conclusion, country music star Toby Keith endured a long, difficult fight against stomach cancer after being diagnosed with the disease in late 2021. Despite treatment including surgery, chemotherapy and radiation, Keith succumbed to advanced stomach cancer in February 2024 at just 62 years old.

Stomach cancer causes over 11,000 deaths in the United States each year. Risk factors include H. pylori infections, smoking, diet, family history and obesity. Symptoms can include digestive issues, abdominal discomfort, nausea and unintended weight loss.

Keith demonstrated great poise and courage throughout his cancer journey, continuing to sing and bring joy to fans even during his illness. His passing was deeply felt by many across the country music community and beyond. Keith leaves an incredible musical legacy topped by classics like “Should’ve Been a Cowboy” and “Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue.”


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