Kane Brown lost his drummer, Kenny Dixon, in a car accident on Saturday (Oct. 12), and at the 2019 CMT Artists of the Year event on Wednesday night (Oct. 16), the country star's late bandmate was at the top of his mind. Brown's short acceptance speech, and his win as a whole, was dedicated to Dixon.

Brown did not appear on the red carpet prior to the 2019 CMT Artists of the Year ceremony, and This Is Us actor Lonnie Chavis introduced his tribute video before Chris Young came out onstage with Brown's trophy, so it was a shock to the audience at Nashville's Schermerhorn Symphony Center when Brown walked out from the side of the venue to accept his honor. His appearance earned a standing ovation, and he stood onstage in choked-up silence for several moments before speaking.

"Thank you all so much. I want to dedicate this to our drummer Kenny," Brown told the crowd. He started with me coming out of Chattanooga ... People didn’t think we would make it. He was with me the whole time. He was so supportive of me. And I love you man. I miss you. The band misses you."

Dixon, who was just 27 years old, died on Saturday, in a single-car crash outside of Nashville. Brown canceled a Friday night (Oct. 18) show in Los Angeles, Calif., following the accident, as Dixon's wake and funeral services are scheduled for Saturday (Oct. 19) and Sunday (Oct. 20). The Georgia native leaves behind a fiancee, with whom he was planning a November wedding, and young son.

On Monday (Oct. 14), the Tennessee Highway Patrol shared additional details about the crash, citing speed as a factor. THP Lt. Charlie Caplinger reports that neither drugs nor alcohol are suspected to have played a role in the accident, and no criminal charges have been filed in relation to the tragedy.

In addition to Brown, the 2019 CMT Artists of the Year ceremony honored Dan + Shay, Carrie UnderwoodLuke Combs, and Thomas Rhett as the 10th class of CMT Artists of the Year. Reba McEntire was named the 2019 CMT Artist of a Lifetime, while Ashley McBryde was named Breakout Artist of the Year.

Rest in Peace: Remembering the Country Artists Who Died in 2019

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