The 55-year-old country star who's been recovering from a crippling 2013 stroke stood Sunday night for a long round of applause after being introduced by "I Drive Your Truck" singer Lee Brice, who'd just played a verse from Travis' hit "Forever and Ever, Amen."
"It was an amazing gift to feel all the love from you tonight in Dallas," the "On the Other Hand" singer said in a note on his website.
After weathering a couple of embarrassing arrests in 2012 — the one in August had him getting involved in a fight between Davis and her then-estranged husband — Travis found himself hospitalized in early July 2013 for heart problems. Days later he suffered a stroke and had to have emergency surgery to relieve pressure on his brain. He was released after three weeks to a physical-therapy center in Nashville and finally returned to his Tioga, Texas, ranch.
For months there was no news about the singer's condition until he made public appearances in 2014 using a wheelchair and then a walking stick. By November, he was telling a TV station he'd walked 300 yards without the stick.
Davis told WFAA-TV at that time that even though Travis suffers from aphasia — he struggles to communicate verbally — "The music does come easy. He plays every single chord, and he knows all the words."
"The kind cards and heartfelt letters of testimony and encouragement brought me through the darkest of days," the singer said in that Sunday letter on his website. "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."
He said he's still working through "music/speech/occupational/physical therapy" but hopes he'll one day be able to perform onstage again.