Watch Randy Travis Surprise Charlie Daniels at the 2016 Volunteer Jam
Charlie Daniels didn’t just receive a special honor during his 2016 Volunteer Jam on Wednesday night (Nov. 30) — he received a special visit from a friend: Randy Travis. The country icon surprised Daniels onstage at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena, to help present the Rare Country Humanitarian of the Year Award.
“What the heck is goin’ on right there?” Daniels said into the microphone as, following his performance of “The South’s Gonna Do It Again,” Travis walked onstage with his wife Mary. The two hugged, then Travis and retired U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Keith Huber — who is also Middle Tennessee State University’s senior advisor for veterans and leadership initiatives — honored Daniels with his new trophy.
Daniels was honored with the Rare Country Humanitarian of the Year Award “in recognition of [his] enormous contributions to our veterans and their precious military families,” Huber explained to the Volunteer Jam crowd. The award specifically honors Daniels’ work with the Journey Home Project, a non-profit organization co-founded by Daniels and his manager, David Corlew, that helps veterans transition after returning home from tours abroad. The 2016 Volunteer Jam — which also featured performances by Travis Tritt, Chris Stapleton, Luke Bryan and many more — raised $245,000 for the organization.
Both Daniels and Travis were inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in October, and Travis previously joined Daniels onstage during the 2016 CMA Music Festival in June. Since his 2013 stroke, Travis has largely shied away from the stage, instead focusing on recuperating. However, he performed “Amazing Grace” at a February funeral and during his Hall of Fame induction, and took part in the 2016 CMA Awards’ opening medley.
“This has been an incredible year,” Daniels told the crowd on Wednesday night. “I was so surprised when [Travis] came walking out here. This is one of the strongest, most courageous men that I know. And I can tell you, he’s getting better yet, and he’ll sing again!”
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