Lauren Alaina’s stepfather Sam Ramker has passed away at the age of 47 following a battle with cancer. Alaina confirmed the news on Instagram on Sunday, Oct. 21. The singer posted a picture of herself holding her ACM Award for New Female Vocalist alongside Ramker, her mother Kristy and fiancée Alex, all smiling proudly. In the post, Alaina shared that Ramker passed away at 1 a.m. on Sunday and in a sweet tribute to the father figure in her life, the singer called him a “great dad” and “strong.”
“He was the purest example of how to love and live life fully,” she wrote. She also shared with fans the story of her stepfather’s peaceful final moments.
“His last few hours were some of the most amazing moments I know I will ever have the privilege of witnessing. He opened his eyes last night. They shined the brightest I’ve ever seen anyone’s eyes shine, and he said, ‘Jesus,’” she posted.” “He later said, ‘I love you all. I found it.’ My mom asked him what he found and he said, ‘Heaven. I’ve got to go.’”
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My stepdad, Sam, went to heaven at one o’clock this morning. He was the purest example of how to love and live life fully. His last few hours were some of the most amazing moments I know I will ever have the privilege of witnessing. He opened his eyes last night. They shined the brightest I’ve ever seen anyone’s eyes shine, and he said, “Jesus.” We said, “What do you see Sam?” He said, “It’s so beautiful.” Mom asked him who he saw and he told her a bunch of people, including his mama. He later said, “I love you all. I found it.” My mom asked him what he found and he said, “Heaven. I’ve got to go.” An hour later he went to be with the Lord. I want this story to be an example of how real God is. We are only here for a short amount of time, and we have to live like there is no tomorrow. I want us to all be a little more like Sam. He was strong. He was the most compassionate person in the world. He would go without to help a stranger. He was a great dad. Now he is with the best Father in the universe. Thank you to everyone who has supported our family in this time. We appreciate the love, donations, and prayers that we have received.
The “Road Less Traveled” singer also thanked fans for their support throughout his battle with Stage IV Melanoma.
Ramker’s family started a GoFundMe page in June of 2018 after Alaina confirmed that he was battling cancer and fans had been reaching out to help. Nearly $20,000 was raised over the course of six months for his radiation treatment.
The country singer is currently on tour with Cole Swindell’s “Reason to Drink Another…Tour,” but has cancelled a few appearances due to her family’s medical emergency.
“To the families and people who have been affected by this horrible disease or any disease, my family has felt the pain you’ve felt for the last four months,” she wrote in an Instagram post in July. “We are praying for you. We love you, and we are so thankful for all of the love coming our way.”