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George Michael "Mickey" McIlwain, the father of Thompson Square singer Shawna Thompson and father-in-law to her partner, Keifer Thompson, died Thursday (Feb. 23) in Alabama "after a valiant battle with cancer," according to statement released by the duo's publicist. "Shawna and her family were by his side when he passed. Funeral arrangements are incomplete at this time. We ask that you please keep both Shawna and Keifer as well as Shawna's family in your thoughts and prayers during this incredibly difficult time."
Shawna's father was himself a longtime musician who helped to foster her early and enduring love for country music as well as bluegrass and gospel.