Toby Keith

Toby Keith Cancels Shows at Wheaton Ribfest, Wisconsin State Fair After Announcing Stomach Cancer Diagnosis

Ryan Cowen

Country music star Toby Keith has canceled his upcoming performance at DuPage County's 33rd annual Ribfest in Wheaton this summer after revealing Sunday that he has begun treatment for stomach cancer, a diagnosis which he says he received in the fall of 2021.

“Last fall I was diagnosed with stomach cancer," Keith, 60, tweeted. "I’ve spent the last 6 months receiving chemo, radiation and surgery. So far, so good. I need time to breathe, recover, and relax."

“I am looking forward to spending this time with my family. But I will see the fans sooner than later. I can’t wait."

He signed the statement "T."

Keith was set to perform June 17, opening night of the BBQ festival. According to the Ribfest website, the festival is "actively seeking a replacement for Toby Keith to join Ellie King on Friday, June 17. Instructions for refund requests will be available in the future."

In 2017, Keith also headlined the festival. “When Toby performed at Ribfest in 2017, we had one of our biggest crowds ever, " Bev Schafman, chair for 2022 Ribfest said earlier this year. "It was a great night."

Keith was also set to perform at the Ohio State Fair on July 28, and the Wisconsin State Fair on Aug. 4. Both shows have been canceled.

“Our hearts go out to Toby, his family, and his dedicated fans.," Wisconsin State Fair officials said in a statement.

"During this difficult time, Toby Keith and his team have made the decision to focus on his health; therefore, he will not be performing his Wisconsin State Fair show.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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