American Patriot: Toby Keith

Toby Keith


A Patriot is

A person who loves, supports, and defends his or her country and its interests with devotion.

The American Patriot Series acknowledges the activities of those individuals, celebrities, and/or groups who give their time, effort, and/or money to support our country’s active duty military personnel and our veterans. Their actions identify them as a patriot and the purpose of this series is to recognize them as such.

Toby Keith is most widely known as a country music songwriter and singer. But he is also a movie actor and producerAnd he’s a business entrepreneur with his restaurants located in the mid-west and southwest, USA.

But it is Keith’s support of our military and veterans that make him an American Patriot. His support for them is personal with him. He has said,

My father was a soldier. He taught his kids to respect veterans.It’s that respect and the thank-you that we have a military that’s in place and ready to defend our nation; our freedom.”

He began his visits to the middle east to perform for our service members in 2002 through the United Service Organization (USO). In 2014, he was recognized by the USO for his performances before

250,000 troops with a touch of home through performances in 17 countries, including Iraq and Afghanistan, and several ships at sea.

Besides his concerts, he wrote two songs that are near and dear to our military and veterans:

1. Courtesy of the Red, White, & Blue (The Angry American)“.

This song is very personal for Keith:

On March 24, 2001, Keith’s father, Hubert Keith (H.K.) Covel, was killed in a car accident. That event and the September 11, 2001 attacks prompted Keith to write the song about his father’s patriotism and faith in the USA. For a long time he just sang the song at concerts for our military personnel but refused to record it.

After he finally recorded the song, it is now ranked #10 on Top 10 Best Patriotic Country Songs of All Time by


2. “The Ballad of Ballad”.

Keith was quoted in an interview while performing at Bagram Air Field, Afghanistan, in 2009 saying it was a

Funny song about an Army recruiter. It made hard core crusted jaded FOB SGt. Majors laugh out loud… I love it.”

Keith also sang in two videos produced by veteran members of the National Guard Bureau’s public affairs team.

The video “American Soldieris named after Keith’s hit song “American Soldier.” It shows National Guard troops performing their duties in Afghanistan, Iraq and supporting homeland efforts.

And the video “All Gave Some; Some Gave All” is a memorial to all Guard members killed during the war against terrorism. Their names are displayed against an American flag that is waving in the breeze. “Taps” is the mournful musical score. The 3-minute, 17-second video ends with the sobering message, which is the title of the song.

And finally, Keith composed the music for the 2005 TV movie “Purple Hearts“.

This movie is,

a documentary of the lives of several wounded veterans who have returned from Iraq. They detail the events on the day they were wounded; the reactions of their friends and family when they returned home to various cities and small towns around America.

In 2015, Toby Keith was one of six individuals to receive that year’s USO Spirit of Hope Award for his support of our military and their families.


Sir: you are truly an American Patriot! And we salute you!


Note: Here are other articles in the American Patriot Series:

1. American Patriot: Madison Rising

2. American Patriot: Gary Sinise

3. American Patriot: President George W. Bush

4. American Patriot: Bill O’Reilly 

Toby Keith
Toby Keith performs for soldiers in Afghanistan

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Chuck Yarling has had many titles in his career thus far: veteran, engineer, math teacher, consultant, technical writer, book author and publisher, and triathlete. He was a member the Military Order of the Purple Heart and Bugles Across America, which plays Taps at military funerals and special events. Spec. 5 Chuck Yarling served with the 26th Combat Engineering Battalion in Vietnam as an awards clerk. His service with the U.S. Army resulted in being awarded the Bronze Star, Purple Heart, and Army Commendation Medal. You may reach Chuck at [email protected]

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