George Strait remembered Joe Diffie as a tremendous talent and asked for prayers for those on the front lines of the coronavirus fight during a message to fans on social media.

Monday's (March 30) note captured Strait's shock and sadness after learning Diffie had died following a short battle with the coronavirus over the weekend. The Country Music Hall of Famer indicated that more than any other reported case of the virus, this one felt different.

"We've lost one of our own now to this silent enemy," Strait writes. "That really hit home to me. I worked with Joe in the past. Great guy and hugely talented singer and entertainer. Let’s pray for his family and for all those who are affected by this terrible virus."

Diffie died on Sunday after revealing he'd been diagnosed on Friday (March 27). He leaves behind his wife of nearly two years and five children from his four marriages. Strait took to Facebook partially to rally his fans during a dark time, but also to encourage social distancing.

"We are going to win," he writes. "Please stay home, healthy and well. Pray for your family, friends, first responders, health care providers, our President and the world."

Diffie's death was the first in country music that was related to coronavirus. The 61-year-old was known for hit songs like "Pickup Man" and "John Deere Green," as well as his poignant ballad "Ships That Don't Come In." An Oklahoma native, Diffie was a '90s country staple, with hits spanning the entire decade. He was remembered fondly by several generations of country music singers.

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