Randy Travis and Mary Beougher (Davis) have one of the most well-known celebrity romances.
Some may have forgotten their tangled past, which allegedly began while they were both married.
Mary Beougher had two children with her then-husband, a dentist who used to treat Travis, and the country singer had previously married a lady called Mary Elizabeth “Lib” Hatcher, with whom he married in 1991 after dating for seven years.
They divorced when she realized he was having an affair with Beougher due to footage from a spy camera put on the brilliant singer’s tour van. He and his first wife divorced shortly after the news broke in 2011.
Travis and Beougher agreed to get back together after his divorce from Hatcher. They were engaged in 2013, but months later, the singer suffered a major stroke that immobilized his right side, interfering with his ability to move and communicate.
Travis said in a book co-written with Ken Abraham, “Forever and Ever, Amen: A Memoir of Music, Faith, and Braving the Storms of Life,” that he heard someone declare he wouldn’t make it while in a coma.
Randy said on the first page of the book that he got used to the constant buzzing of the devices even when he was in a coma. He urged people not to say anything nasty within hearing distance of someone in a coma since they are highly likely to hear them.
At the moment he entered the hospital, the physicians tasked with preserving his life had given him little hope of living. Despite the terrible predictions, his girlfriend continued to believe in him and refused to give up.
They were in the hospital for three weeks before being transported to a rehab clinic in Nashville when his lungs quit working. He’d gotten a staph infection, and his body had turned septic.
Travis, who had nearly been given up for dead, was ultimately able to sing again after years of trying.
He was always semiconscious and unable to breathe without the help of a machine during this period. He was in and out of a coma for six weeks, with a tracheostomy tube forced down his throat and his head wrapped with what he described as a “1920s football helmet.”
At that point, the doctors had given up hope, and they wanted Beougher to give up on him too by turning off his life support because they thought he would never get better.
Rather than making her own decision, Beougher begged Travis to tell her what he wanted, which made him strive as hard as he could to speak the words; nevertheless, nothing came of it but a single tear, which forced him to summon all of his power to grasp his wife’s hand, and just a little was enough.
Beougher confronted the physicians, telling them that the decision was not theirs to make and pushing them to focus on saving him instead. Travis confessed in the book that they both opted to place their confidence and faith in the God they worshiped, knowing that He still had plans for him.
His brain was fully functional when they went home shortly before Thanksgiving in 2013 after four months in the hospital. He was unable to answer coherently after that, so he had to learn how to do so again in speech therapy. He stated:
“We went to speech therapy for three months before I learned to utter the letter ‘A.’ After approximately a year and a half, I was able to say ‘yup,’ ‘nope,’ and ‘bathroom.’”
He went on to explain: “I could say “I love you” and a few other words, but not much else. All of this was tremendously upsetting for me; I felt trapped inside my body’s shell.”
He also had to relearn other important things, such as the many technologies we currently have. It takes Travis a long time to restore most of these abilities.
Throughout it all, though, the singer never saw himself as a victim. In his memoir, he described healing as a “redemption from above.”
Travis and Beougher saw no reason why they couldn’t get married while they improved, so they married but purposefully delayed informing the world until weeks later.
According to ABC News, the couple married on March 21, 2015, finally putting an end to their long-distance relationship.
That year, the singer attended the ACM Awards, but his presence was almost ignored by the audience until it was confirmed that he was there. That occurred after Lee Brice paid tribute to him by playing his popular song “Forever and Ever, Amen.”
Travis merely stood and waved that year, but at a similar event the next year, he opted to sing again. Travis had spent years trying, but he was finally able to sing again.
This occurred during the Nashville ceremony to induct him and five others into the Country Music Hall of Fame.
He sang a brief performance of Amazing Grace, drawing tears and rousing acclaim from the audience, which gave him a standing ovation as soon as he finished.
Travis wrote the song to convey his thanks for the heartfelt tribute members of the country music community had just paid to him.
The annual event was held in the 800-seat CMA Theater at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. In addition to Travis, singer-songwriter Charlie Daniels and producer Fred Foster were recognized.