Thomas Rhett Pauses for Prayer at 2019 CMT Artists of the Year Ceremony
Thomas Rhett put his faith on full display at Wednesday night's (Oct. 16) 2019 CMT Artists of the Year ceremony. From stage, the country star asked the audience to pray with him for his fellow honoree Kane Brown and the others who loved Kenny Dixon, Brown's drummer who died in a car crash on Saturday (Oct. 12).
Earlier in the ceremony, Brown himself had broken down onstage while accepting his 2019 CMT Artist of the Year honor, which he dedicated to his late bandmate. When Rhett took the stage to accept his own trophy, he took the opportunity to "lift up Kane and his family ... [and] his drummer and their family."
"And I don't know if this is very conventional, but can I just pray? Really fast. Is that okay with everybody?" Rhett asked the crowd at Nashville's Schermerhorn Symphony Center. When they cheered back, Rhett began: "Father God, we love You so much ... [R]ight now, I pray that You would be with Kane and his family, and his drummer Kenny and his family, and bring them peace that only You know how to bring somebody."
Both Rhett's performance and his onstage prayer drew the attention of 2019 CMT Artist of a Lifetime honoree Reba McEntire. In the audience, the country icon could be seen showing her approval for Rhett, and during her acceptance speech at the end of the night, she saluted his faith-driven move.
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, Rhett and McEntire, the 2019 CMT Artists of the Year ceremony honored Dan + Shay, Carrie Underwood and Luke Combs as the 10th class of CMT Artists of the Year. Ashley McBryde was named Breakout Artist of the Year.
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