By Annie Reuter

Randy Travis surprised ACM Awards viewers last night (April 19), when he was shown to be in the audience at A&T Stadium in Dallas during the 50th annual award show. And it turned into one of the night’s most emotional moments.

This was one of only a handful of public appearances Travis has made since his 2013 stroke, which impaired his ability to speak and walk.

Related: Randy Travis Makes Appearance at Texas Benefit

During the ACM Awards broadcast, Lee Brice performed Travis’ hit “Forever and Ever, Amen,” then he introduced the singer. Travis stood and waved to the crowd and received a standing ovation.

After his appearance at the ACMs last night, Travis wrote a heartfelt letter to fans on his website, titled Storms of Life.

“Words can never express my gratitude to those who continue to believe in me, pray for me and keep me lifted up in thought and deed,” he wrote. “The kind cards and heartfelt letters of testimony and encouragement brought me through the darkest of days. Mary read each and every one of them to me, and I felt the love and concern being sent my way; and, I gathered strength from this. None of us are worthy of the immense outpouring of support shown to me, and I consider each of my fans, a friend. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

Related: ACM Awards 2015 Recap

He added a hopeful note about his future in music: “It is my prayer that, with continued healing, one day soon, I will be back on that stage exchanging music with my fans … my friends, who with God’s amazing grace, have brought me this far. As I work through music/speech/occupational/physical therapy, it is my hope that my songs of yesterday continue to touch your life in some way.”

Read the full Randy Travis letter on


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