Luke Bryan Cancels CMT Appearance After Death in the Family
Bryan's brother-in-law Ben Lee Cheshire died on Saturday.
— -- Luke Bryan will remain with family instead of appearing tonight at the CMT Artists of the Year special after the singer's family was dealt yet another tragic blow.
Bryan's brother-in-law Ben Lee Cheshire died Saturday at age 46 and he has decided to stay in Georgia to be with family instead of perform at the show honoring the top country artists of 2014, a rep for Bryan told People magazine.
His publicist confirmed the report to ABC News.
Cheshire was the husband of Bryan's late sister Kelly who also passed in 2007 at the age of 39. Cheshire is survived by his three children, who are now all in their teens. According to Cheshire's obituary in the Albany Herald, his funeral was held today and Bryan co-officiated.
Bryan has been open about not only losing his sister, but his only brother years earlier due to a car accident.
The "That's My Kind of Night" singer, 38, spoke to ABC News last year, saying about his brother's death, "You never truly ... move beyond it."
"My only older siblings ... gone from the world, in a flash in two, two different, crazy, tragic manners, that ... we'll never know, and never understand," he continued about his loss. "You can lean on friends and family through it ... and you can get back life."
Just this past October, Bryan spoke to "Nightline" about the importance of family.
"With me, life is precious and life is short, I have a beautiful family and a bunch of overly passionate people working their butts off to make me to make all this happen," he said. "I’m just blessed on so many levels and I want people to feed off that positiveness of just how blessed I am."
The beloved country star also spoke to the show about how his story and his music like "Drink a Beer," written and dedicated to his late siblings, has inspired others to move past tragedy.
"I meet so many people, even this week a young girl said, I don’t even know if she’s old enough to drink, but she gets 'Drink a Beer.' She was like, 'You know the fact that you sing about that with what you’ve been through helped me get over the loss of my brother," he said. "That’s what it’s all about to me ... giving people that moment of helping getting through."
Bryan has persevered and excelled, especially in 2014, earning the top honor of Entertainer of the Year at the 2014 CMA Awards a few weeks back and Top Country Artist at the 2014 Billboard Music Awards.
Even though Bryan won't be in attendance tonight for the CMT Artists of the Year, the show will "honor Luke in absentia and will recognize him in only the best way we know how – out of respect for him and his family," a rep for CMT told People.
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