Randy Travis and his wife, Mary, sat down on The Big Interview with Dan Rather to discuss his life and career, and how he is doing after his devastating stroke in 2013. Mary, who wed Travis in 2015, admits the stroke was an unexpected challenge — one they both met head-on.
“The stroke, that one took us off of our … it kind of puts everything in perspective,” Mary said in a clip shared on social media, “Just to give hope and inspiration to other people, that they too can get through things.”
On The Big Interview this week, I speak with @randytravis and Mary Travis about Randy's trailblazing career, his recovery after a stroke, and what the future holds for his music.
— Dan Rather (@DanRather) January 26, 2021
In the clip, Mary also shared how her husband accomplished something no one else had done, at least in Christian music, with his mega-hit, “Three Wooden Crosses.”
“It was the first time that a song had the world ‘hooker’ in it, and still went No. 1 on the gospel charts,” Mary recalled with a laugh.
Mary previously revealed to Rather how Travis was able to shock the country music community by singing “Amazing Grace” at his Country Music Hall of Fame induction, marking his first public performance since his stroke.
“It was a song that had always been so special to him,” Mary shared on he Big Interview with Dan Rather. “One of his last public appearances was at George Jones’ funeral, and he sang ‘Amazing Grace.’ When we were in physical therapy and occupational and speech therapy, we went for two and a half years, after we finally got out of the hospital, after five and a half months. But that’s where a little girl named Tracy, who had a music degree, she would come in on her lunch hour, bring her keyboard, and started teaching Randy melody and song again.
“So she started teaching him ‘Amazing Grace,’ and the words from his memory bank have been in his brain, which was the unaffected side. The words all came back to him,” she continued. “It was just a matter of the aphasia and forming the words that was the challenge. We spent about two months on just the letter A. But when we got A down, then the next letters and vowels seemed to come exponentially.”