Did Toby Keith Die Suddenly On The Way To Hospital?!

Did country music star Toby Keith just die suddenly on the way to a Los Angeles hospital, or in the hospital, from stomach cancer?!

Take a look at the viral claims, and find out what the facts really are!

Updated @ 2024-02-06 : Added Toby Keith’s true death details.
Originally posted @ 2023-06-17


Claim : Toby Keith Died Suddenly On The Way To Hospital!

People are sharing YouTube videos claiming to prove that Toby Keith just died suddenly on the way to the hospital from stomach cancer, with titles like :

Heart stopped beating, country singer Toby Keith died of stomach cancer at Los Angeles hospital

5 minutes ago / R.I.P Singer Toby Keith Died on the way to the hospital / Goodbye Toby Keith.

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Truth : Toby Keith Died At Home After Fighting Cancer!

This is yet another example of fake news created and propagated by people to generate income from page views and YouTube advertising, and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : Toby Keith Died At Home

Toby Keith (born Toby Keith Covel on July 8, 1961) passed away at home on the night of 5 February 2024, surrounded by his family.

He did not die on the way to the hospital, or in a Los Angeles hospital. He died at home in Norman, Oklahoma, where he has a 10,000 square foot home in a sprawling estate.

Those claims were made by fake news creators on YouTube, TikTok, and social media platforms, months and years before he died.

Toby Keith’s death was announced on his official Instagram page, days after he posted a video speaking about how he did an undercover show at the Fillmore club in New York City, as the “Incognito Bandito” band. His publicist, Elaine Schock, also confirmed his death.

Toby Keith also appeared in public on the Bobby Bones Show in early January 2024, speaking about his stomach surgery, and working on his singing. At that time, Toby Keith said that his health was improving.

Toby Keith was 62 years old when he died. He leaves behind his wife, Tricia, and three children – Shelley, Krystal, and Stelen.

Fact #2 : Toby Keith Fought Stomach Cancer

Toby Keith announced in June 2022 that he had been diagnosed with stomach cancer at the end of 2021. He said that he underwent chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery in the past six months since that diagnosis.

Last fall I was diagnosed with stomach cancer. I’ve spent the last six months receiving chemo, radiation and surgery. So far, so good. I need time to breathe, recover and relax.

In November 2022, Toby Keith told CMT Hot 20 Countdown’s Cody Alan, that he was thinking about getting back to “fightin’ shape” as the cancer treatment was “pretty debilitating”. However, he suggested that everything was looking good.

I’m thinking about getting back to fightin’ shape. I need a little bit of time to just rest up and heal up. 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.

On June 2, 2023, Toby Keith posted a rare photo of himself to raise awareness for the non-profit Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. He looked noticeably thinner, but very much still alive.

Then on July 15, 2023, he posted a video singing at the back of his Uber ride, which had a karaoke machine! He looked much better in this video. By January 2024, he told Bobby Bones that he no longer had “any issues” with his health.

While his family did not announce his cause of death, in all likelihood, Toby Keith died from stomach cancer.

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Fact #3 : Toby Keith Hospital Photos Were Edited

I analysed the photos used in these fake Toby Keith death videos, and traced the origin of two examples used in many of these videos.

This photo used to show Toby Keith unconscious and intubated in a hospital bed is actually a photo of Pittsburgh radio DJ, Sean McDowell, who retired from the WDVE station in May 2019.

In August 6, 2019, he posted these photos on Twitter, revealing that a year ago – on August 6, 2018, he had an operation to fix his heart’s mitral valve.

Exactly 1 year ago today, St. Clair Hospital, Dr. Scott Halbreiner sawed thru my sternum, opened my rib cage, fixed my heart (mitral valve) & then wired me shut! Biggest Thanks Ever to Dr. Halbreiner, Dr. Dave Burkey & the nurses in the CVSU! Because of you guys, I’m still here!

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This photo of an intubated man lying in a hospital bed is actually a stock photo with a photo ID of 1745351552 on Shutterstock. It was taken on May 20, 2020, with the following description.

DUQUE DE CAXIAS,(BRAZIL),MAY,20,2020: doctors take care of patients with covid-19 and an intensive care unit (ICU) at hospital são josé specialized in the treatment of covid-19

Fact #4 : Toby Keith Death Hoax Was Driven By Fake Fact Check Too

This Toby Keith death hoax, ironically, was also being driven by another fake fact check article by MediaMass Project.

News of singer Toby Keith’s death spread quickly earlier this week causing concern among fans across the world. However the January 2024 report has now been confirmed as a complete hoax and just the latest in a string of fake celebrity death reports. Thankfully, the singer best known for hit songs like Red Solo Cup, I Love This Bar or Should’ve Been a Cowboy is alive and well.

Their claim of a viral R.I.P. Toby Keith Facebook page is false. There is no such Facebook page. It is their standard fake fact check spiel for fake celebrity deaths.

The statement from Toby Keith’s unnamed reps confirming that he is not dead is exactly the same as statements from other celebrities whose reps MediaMass claimed were victims of death hoaxes, like Angelina Jolie, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Barry Gibb, Brad Pitt, Bruce Willis, Celine Dion, Clint Eastwood, Cristiano Ronaldo, Dolly Parton, Harrison Ford, Justine Bieber, Lionel Messi, Lucy LiuMadonna, Melanie Laurent, Mike Tyson, Morgan Freeman, Oprah Winfrey, Robert Pattinson, Simon Cowell, Sylvester Stallone, Taylor Swift, Tom Cruise, and Tom Hanks.

He joins the long list of celebrities who have been victimized by this hoax. He’s still alive and well, stop believing what you see on the Internet.

Hidden in the description page for the MediaMass Project is a disclaimer that they are a “satire” website. That’s the usual “cover” for websites peddling fake news.

Regardless of their reasons, anything posted by MediaMass.net must be considered as fake news, until proven otherwise.

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Fact #5 : This Is Just Fake Celebrity News

This is yet another example of fake celebrity news created to generate page views and money through advertising, just like these examples:

Please help us FIGHT FAKE NEWS by sharing this fact check article out, and please SUPPORT our work!


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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.


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