Rascal Flatts formed in Columbus, Ohio back in ’99. Just a hair over 20 years later, they broke fans’ hearts with the announcement of their breakup. The announcement came in January of 2020 during a segment of CBS’s “This Morning.” Now, up until this point, fans have heard one story behind the events leading up to that pivotal moment. Now, the band’s Gary LeVox is adding to that conversation. As it turns out, he still finds it hard to talk about the breakup and it’s an emotionally charged topic to this day. Here’s what he shared recently.
Gary LeVox: ‘I’ve Never Been Okay With the Way [Rascal Flatts] Ended’
In the aftermath of the band’s breakup announcement, Rascal Flatts took the official stance that the decision came as a mutual thing. At one point last year, Jay DeMarcus also offered up his own personal statement. He said the following: “Twenty years in a band together is a long, long time, and I love the fact that we’re able to look back and say we still love and respect each other after 20 years. A lot of bands can’t say that.”
While Gary LeVox doesn’t go on to bash any of his former bandmates, his story does take a slight departure from theirs. Rascal Flatts originally planned a farewell tour, which the pandemic later thwarted. This major bummer on top of a band member’s resignation just proved to be too much.
“I’ve never been okay with the way that it ended,” LeVox admits now. “I wasn’t happy that Joe Don (Rooney) quit.”
LeVox also tells People: “I hate the way that it ended, I can’t stand the fact that it just feels there’s no closure with something that we’ve been so blessed with.”
In the end, it looks like Rooney’s departure acted as the straw that broke the camel’s back.
Gary LeVox Says ‘There’s Power in Prayer’ in Reference to Ex-Bandmate’s Struggles
After People’s interview with Gary, reporters reached out to Rooney for his own comments. Rooney did not reply, continuing his recent trend of decreased public activity. Unfortunately, the former Rascal Flatts member added a DUI arrest to his record last month. Since then, he went pretty much silent and also turned some of his social media accounts private.
A month before that, Rooney and DeMarcus showed up to an award show representing Rascal Flatts without Gary. Even in receiving two awards, neither mentioned former bandmate, Gary LeVox. In closing the People interview, Gary revealed they have not made contact in a while. Still, he doesn’t seem to harbor any residual resent or ill feelings.
In referring to Rooney’s difficulties over the past month, Gary hoped for the best for him. He told the publication “I think God gets your attention in different ways. I just wish him the best and I hope he gets everything that he needs to get well and take care of whatever issues he’s got going on. There’s power in prayer.”