If anyone ever desires a story of strength, positivity, and overcoming great loss, then they can look no further than country singer Luke Bryan. He's known as one of the greatest assets to the country music industry, but his personal life has not always been so uplifting.
At a young age, he lost his older brother and then lost his older sister not long after. Further down the line, he was faced with the task of taking on her teenage children alongside his college sweetheart, Caroline Boyer.
Despite this tragedy and heartache, Bryan learned to rise above and meet the challenge head-on, sharing with his wife the same feeling of strength and ability to overcome. Since then, he has successfully raised his family in spite of the torment they all dealt with.
Therefore, it's not surprising that Bryan's music is inspired by nothing more than his own life and personal struggles. Among other subjects, he also sings of great love and learning to enjoy the good things in life.
All in all, he's a true character of strength and determination, of light and compassion. In his personal life, he devotes much of his time to charity work as well as his musical pursuits but allows nothing to interfere with his family life.
For a man who considers family to be everything, here are 25 more things about Luke Bryan's blended family that many don't know.
25 He Got Into The Country Music Business Late In The Game
Although he began playing the guitar at the age of 14, Bryan didn't gain steady popularity until 2007.
He didn't immediately pursue music and while he was endowed with talent, his first success came years after he'd already graduated from college.
After tragedy struck his family, Bryan decided that pursuing a creative solo stint as a musician could wait, and he remained close to home for some years before encouragement from his father led to his breaking-out moment. His first album, I'll Stay Me, was the start of his success as a country singer. In the years to follow, he would release eight major albums.
24 Family Has Been A Number One Priority Since Teenhood
The country singer and his family mourned the loss of his older brother in a car crash when he was only 19. It was unexpected and rocked his family so badly that the thought of his leaving for college was too much for them to bear. Instead, Bryan remained close to home and attended Georgia Southern University where he could remain close to home while still getting a college degree. He studied business administration and earned a bachelor's. He also became a member of the Sigma Chi fraternity during that time, adding to his list of academic college accomplishments before becoming a musician.
23 A Musician At Only 14
Bryan is renowned as one of the greatest influences in country music to this day, but it wasn't always that way.
At the age of 14, he learned that he had a knack for playing the guitar and this is what led him to discover his talent.
A quick learner, he played in local clubs as a teen and shared his interests with other local bands. He would occasionally play local gigs until the age of 19 when he left for Georgia Southern University. Although he'd pursue an academic job for several years, his passion for singing, playing guitar, and songwriting never truly left him.
22 A Real Love Story: Marrying His College Sweetheart
While attending Georgia Southern University, Bryan would unknowingly meet his future wife. Her name was Caroline Boyer, a sweet Southern belle who would say "I do" almost a decade later. The two have two children together and three that they would soon take in due to yet another family tragedy. The two met at a bar local to their college, Dingus Magees, when Boyer was only a freshman. Not many can say that they stuck with and eventually married their college sweetheart, but these two certainly have it in the bag... Not to mention, their kids are just as stunning as they are. Talk about #goals.
21 They Brought Two Beautiful Kids Into The World
Speaking of children, both Bryan and Boyer have had two beautiful sons together. The two are Thomas Boyer Bryan and Tatum Christopher Bryan, each going by the nicknames of "Bo" and "Tate."
The Bryan family makes it clear how much compassion and love their have for their children and don't hide anything when it comes to family trips and events.
Bryan is a huge fan of outdoor sports and hunting, and occasionally posts photos of the boys being boys. As a family, they seemingly do everything together and always have a great time doing so. We wonder; will there be some new musicians anytime soon?
20 A Tragic Moment In His Personal Life
When many think of a tragedy, it's easy enough to think of something that has rocked your world personally. Unfortunately, Bryan has had the misfortune of dealing with loss more than any one person should. Not only did he lose his older brother when he was only a teenager, but as an adult, he lost his older sister as well. His older sister Kelly, who had organized a huge presence at his first debut at the Grand Ole Opry, was gone from the world only days after the performance. The cause is still unknown, understandably leaving little closure for the family who had already dealt with so much heartache in the past.
19 Adopting His Nephew And Two Nieces
Not long after the loss of his older sister, Bryan would receive news in 2014 that his brother-in-law had also passed away. This left his nephew and two nieces orphaned and though they were all in their teens, they would need someone to look after them. Of the adoption, Boyer said that they "never had to think twice about it."
The selfless couple has done everything in their power to ensure that Tilden, Jordan, and Kris have a tremendous life, and it's working.
Bryan has said that their blended family is something of a "social experiment" but has called it "amazing" all the same. Together, they believe that their positivity will help inspire others to find their strength and keep going, should they find themselves in a similar position.
18 Bryan Is A Georgia Native
Contrary to his current Nashville roots, Bryan was born in the deep south of Georgia. He's a southerner through and through and that's evident through his mannerisms and a true heart of gold. He came from a family who also has strong Georgia roots, as his father is a farmer. His family and hometown ties are so strong that he refused to leave for Nashville after high school as was intended for college and instead chose to stay close to home. His graduation from Georgia Southern University was fitting for the Georgia native, and also how he met the love of his life, Caroline Boyer.
17 "Luke" Is Not His Real First Name
Bryan actually shares a name with one of his sons, as he was born Thomas Luther Bryan. "Luke" became a nickname for what is actually his middle name and would soon become his stage name as well.
Early on, before he was known as Luke Bryan, he wrote songs for Billy Currington.
This is what helped give him a start in the music field and got him acclimated with the country music industry. When he released his first major album in 2007, he was then known as "Luke Bryan" and the name stuck, both personally as well as with his famous reputation.
16 His Family Has An Interesting History
Coming from such a strong southern family, it's expected that Bryan would have strong southern roots, too. His father is a peanut farmer with a significantly large business, and it's here that Bryan spent his working days while attending college. His father is also responsible for pushing him to pursue music. By "firing" Bryan after he graduated, his father was a driving force in encouraging Bryan to get out into the world and head for fame. He told his son to "pack his truck" and head for Nashville, knowing that he couldn't put his future country music longing on hold forever.
15 Losing His Older Brother At 19 Changed His Path
Bryan had every intention of heading to Nashville at the age of 19 after he'd graduated high school. Sadly, this was not the scenario that played out for him. After losing his older brother in a car crash, his family was unexpectedly distraught and he knew that there was no way he could possibly leave him during that time.
In an interview with his mother, she stated that, understandably, Bryan knew that she needed him more than ever during that time.
Staying close to home didn't turn out to be the worst thing in the world, as it was here that he met his future wife.
14 College And Greek Life
Surprisingly, Bryan was part of a fraternity in college. Sigma Chi was his Greek life of choice, a prominent fraternity at Georgia Southern University. His wild fraternity days make up much of the songs he's well-known for, and many appreciate the college-like, free-spirited undertone of them. He continued to play music while in Sigma Chi, playing with bands that were well-known around campus. Although some continue to critique his choice of lyric style, Bryan says that these complaints don't bother him in the slightest and will be the first to know when his song style outlives his age or reputation.
13 "Entertainer Of The Year", A High Honor
This is not the only award that Bryan has received and it likely won't be the last. He has won an Academy of Country Music Awards honor as well as the Country Music Association's "Entertainer of the Year" award.
To this day, he's still known as one of the greatest country music singers and entertainers and doesn't seem to be relinquishing that title anytime soon.
Since his start in 2007, he has sold over seven million albums worldwide as well as over 27 million singles. He has co-written many of his songs and co-produced several as well, but there's no denying that he has a talent and a knack for the country music biz.
12 A December Wedding For The Books
The love story between Bryan and his wife, Caroline Boyer, is one for the books. They were married on December 8th, 2006, and have been happy together ever since. When describing the first time he met his wife, Bryan says that "It was love at first sight with Caroline — those blue eyes of hers. I knew that, no matter what, I was going to make my way over to her." While they did separate for roughly five years in between, fate brought them back together. Boyer happened to be in town when Bryan was playing a gig and after a welcome invitation to her family's Christmas party, they've been going strong ever since.
11 Much Of His Time Is Devoted To Giving Back
It's true that Bryan is a selfless as he seems. Much of the work he does outside of performing and creating music has to do with charity and charity events, during which he's not afraid to get involved and make an impact.
He's well known in the field for his work with the City of Hope and Red Cross.
His personal support doesn't end there, however; he's also known for being a big supporter of causes such as HIV/AIDS research, human rights, cancer health and research, children's disaster relief, and various other health-related causes. Giving back seems to be in his nature and it's easy to do for someone so charismatic and compassionate.
10 A Unique High School Performance As Frank Butler
Before his personal fame as the world-renowned Luke Bryan, he was known on a much smaller scale in his high school's drama department. While there are few photos floating around on the internet and even less as far as it being committed to film, Bryan did act in his high school play. During his high school tenure, he earned the lead in Annie Get Your Gun as Frank Butler, the male lead who falls in love with the main character, Annie Oakley. Don't worry, he was fully-outfitted in the most country gear possible and did a beautiful job of selling the part.
9 As Cute As His Kids Are, They Have Cuter Nicknames
If there's anything in this life Bryan loves more than music, it's his family. That's plain to see in his social media posts as well as his personal life, and the love he has for his kids is unreal.
The two sons he has with wife Caroline Boyer, Bo and Tatem, have each earned nicknames appropriate to their father's love for them.
Bo is nicknamed "Bo Bo" and Tatem has earned the nickname "Tater Bug." Bryan says of the nicknames, "it all begins with family. It's more important than anything else in life." We love that the two will grow up with nicknames that ring true to this.
8 His First Job Was Anything Crazy
Coming from a family that knows hard work and determination is everything when it comes to getting where you want to be in life, it's no surprise that Bryan was working at such a young age. While many might think that his first job was on his father's farm, it was actually much more common than that; he worked at a grocery store. At the young age of 12, Bryan was already stocking shelves and taking care of the produce section at his local grocery store in Leesburg, Georgia. Many can relate, especially if they, too, found themselves working their first jobs at Rubio's.
7 If It's True Love, Get A Tattoo... On Your Butt?
Surprise! It's rumored that Bryan is a bit of a bad boy (as if the fraternity-joining and spring break songs weren't telling enough!). This fun fact was actually made public knowledge by Jason Aldean while the two were on tour together.
The fellow country singer claims that Bryan has Caroline Boyer's initials tattooed on his fanny but whether this is true remains to be seen.
Supposedly, after much itching and protest, Bryan came clean about what he had done. Bryan himself hasn't confirmed this story, but it's a fun one to share nevertheless. After all, what better way is there to honor someone you're deeply in love with?
6 Second Grade Was A Bit Hard For The Country Singer
While not much is known about this incident as it's not one that Bryan talks about very often, he revealed in an interview with Us Weekly that in second grade, he was hit by a car. We can draw the conclusion that it wasn't overly serious as he has no long-term effects from it (at least, not that we know of), but it's surprising news nevertheless. It appears that his life has been riddled with many accidents and tragedy, but the country singer remains strong and positive through it all. He sets a good precedent an example for anyone who ever finds themselves in similar shoes.
5 Cool On The Outside, Panic On The Inside: Anxiety Before Events
The singer has revealed in several interviews that, just like anyone else, he also get anxiety before going out on stage. The country singer got his first start with singing while he went to church as a young boy and it has stuck with him ever since.
At age 14, he was playing the guitar as though it was second nature to him, and the rest is history.
However, Bryan claims that his pre-show anxiety is a good thing and rather than let it take over, he uses it to his advantage. He claims that anxiety is a great way for him to get pumped up before jumping out on stage and we totally get it.
4 Singing Was A Love Passed Down Through His Family
When he was only a baby, Bryan's mother would often sing to him. This might seem like a small, yet common, gesture when raising a child, but it left an impression. She recalls how her humming would soothe him when he was young, specifically "Rock of Ages." The song became an instant comfort to him and before he couldn't even form words, he was humming the tune without the lyrics. In the words of his mother, as a "sickly baby," this was the one thing that would calm him down and comfort him when he wasn't feeling well. Even to this day, he can still hum it in perfect key.
3 A Surprising Dance Move: The Moonwalk
Hilariously enough, the country singer has made it clear that he has some serious moves.
As if it wasn't obvious enough based on his ability to shimmy across the stage at his shows with no effort at all, the singer also revealed that he once knew how to moonwalk with perfection.
His learning of the flawless dance move stemmed from his love of the album Thriller, by Michael Jackson, which was the first one he'd ever owned. It was this that inspired his gracious dance moves and allowed him to moonwalk with the best of them as a little kid.
2 Leesburg, Georgia, Has Their Own Dedication To Bryan
The south is known for being proud of many things from collard greens to true blues jazz, but one thing that Georgia is particularly proud of is Luke Bryan's roots. As you enter Leesburg, you'll come upon a sign that points out the town is the specific birthplace of the famed country singer, Luke Bryan. This is one of several signs that are scattered about the state and you can guarantee that the entire town is proud of their country music history. Bryan himself is proud of his roots, as he should be. It is where he got his start, after all! We're thinking a road trip might be in order.
1 His Sons, Thomas And Tatum
While Bryan and his wife, Caroline Boyer, have since taken in his nephew and two older nieces, they do have two children of their own. Thomas and Tatem mean more than anything to them and you can see this plain as day every family photo they share.
The happy family has posted their fair share of holiday, vacation, and everyday photos, each one exuding more love than the next.
They take care and are sure to promote tremendous positivity in all of their children's lives, ensuring that they'll be able to do whatever it is they set their minds to. Among their favorite things to do are spend days out on the water and take part in their father's favorite outdoor sports.
Sources: Us Magazine, ABC News, People, USA Today