When Craig Morgan and his family decided to film their new reality show, “Morgan Family Strong,” they wanted one thing to come out of the experience—Positivity.
“A positive impact,” Craig’s daughter Alexandra says about what she wants fans to take from the show. “Honestly, it sounds super cheesy, and it sounds repetitive because we say it all the time. But after my brother passed away, we saw the impact that he had. I think we knew a little bit of it before but not to the extent that we saw that people shared.”
Craig’s son and Alexandra’s brother, Jerry, passed away in July 2016 at the age 19. The teen lost his life in a tubing accident on the Tennessee River near Kentucky Lake—100 miles west of Nashville. The cause of death was ruled accidental drowning. As the family coped with their loss, Craig looked for ways to help heal and deal with their grief.
The Morgan family came together to open the Gallery at Morgan Farms —a family run brick and mortar shop that sells various items handmade by Craig himself from re-purposed and recycled materials—in their hometown of Dickson, Tenn. In fact, everything in the gallery is made by someone in the Morgan family. The idea for the gallery came from the painful loss of their son. Creating a project that the whole family could work on together, helped them to keep going after such a traumatic loss.
As the Gallery was being created, the reality show was born. “We had looked at doing a family show when Jerry was here—when he was still in junior high or high school,” Craig reveals to One Country. “Then something happened between my scheduling and everything, it just didn’t work out. Fast forward, we lose our son, and we were struggling. As a family, it was tough. It was hard. We weren’t having problems internally, it was just tough. We decided we were going to open up this family business, and a friend of mine who was a producer and director said, after he hung out with us for a couple of days, ‘We really should film this.’
And “Morgan Family Strong” was born. The docu-series follows the family at home and on tour as they come together around the heartbreak of losing their son and brother, by launching the family’s passion project – Morgan Farms. In addition to the family business, the show takes a behind-the-scenes look at Craig’s thriving country music career that produced several hits, including “That’s What I Love About Sunday” and “International Harvester.”
However, not everyone in the Morgan family was excited about being part of the the reality show. “Everybody except Karen [Craig’s wife]. She didn’t want to do it,” Craig shares. “She still doesn’t want to do it. Because we had talked about doing this before with Jerry, she says she just didn’t want to do anything like this without him. But she does it, and ironically enough, she’s the dang superstar. I think it’s because she’s so honest. She is funny, and she’s honest. I think that says a lot. I think people recognize that.”
While the family still hasn’t viewed all the episodes, they maintain that positive attitude about what’s to come. That same positive attitude they want to pass on to family, friends and the lives they continue to touch.
“What we want to do with this show, with our store, with everything that I do, with my music—we want it to all be beneficial. We want it to be inspiring, have a positive impact and motivate people to want to do good things and do better,” said Craig.
“We want our legacy as individuals, and as a family—we want the Morgan family legacy to be people saying, ‘They were so positive and joyful, and they affected everyone around them in a positive way.'”
Adds Craig, “In spite of heartache.”
The series premiere of “Morgan Family Strong” makes it’s debut on March 1 at 9:30 pm ET on the Up TV network.