Toby Keith's son has paid tribute to his late father with a poignant Instagram post.
The 62-year-old singer earlier this week, two-and-a-half years after he was diagnosed with stomach cancer and his son Stelen Covel took to social media to remember his dad.
Stelen wrote: "You are the strongest man I have ever known. A fighter. A true titan of your industry. My guiding star. My coach. My hero.
"An embodiment of the American Spirit.
"You are a man whose strength, prowess, and talent could only be trumped by his ability to be a father and husband.
"Your impact is forever stamped on the world and on millions of people, yet not one person knew you the way I did. You were my biggest champion and the guiding light in my darkest times.
"The best mentor a man could ask for.
"You held a passion that was greater than mountains and it radiates through every lyric and chord. In the everlasting echo from the legacy of your music, you leave me strength and faith to lean on in the silence that follows.
"You truly did it your way, from the starting gates to the finish line, and never apologized for it.
"The only thing I truly ever wanted in life was to make you proud. I promise I will continue to make you proud.
"It’s not goodbye forever; it’s just goodbye for now.
"I love you cowboy."
The country music icon, best known for songs including ‘How Do You Like Me Now?!’ and ‘Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue’, was hit with his cancer diagnosis in 2021.
A statement posted to his X account after his death said: “Toby Keith passed peacefully last night on February 5th, surrounded by his family.
“He fought his fight with grace and courage. Please respect the privacy of his family at this time.”
Toby is survived by his wife Tricia Lucus, who he married in 1984, and their children Shelley, 44, Krystal, 38, and 27-year-old son Stelen.
Months after his cancer diagnosis, Toby admitted he had found the disease “pretty debilitating”, but insisted he still had hope for the future.
He told Country Music Television’s ‘Hot 20’: “I’m thinking about getting back into fighting shape.
“It’s pretty debilitating to have to go through all that, but as long as everything stays hunky-dory, then we’ll look at something good in the future I need a little bit of time to just rest up and heal up.”