Musician Wynonna Judd and her sister, actress Ashley Judd, commemorated their mother, country star Naomi Judd, on Sunday as they accepted the Judds’ induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame.
Naomi died on Saturday at the age of 76 following a battle with her mental health.
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Wynonna — one-half of country music duo the Judds — and her sister, Ashley, appeared on stage during Sunday night’s ceremony and accepted the Hall of Fame medal on Naomi’s behalf.
“My mama loved you so much,” Ashley wept, “and she appreciated your love for her, and I’m sorry that she couldn’t hang on until today.”
She continued, “Your esteem for her and your regard for her really penetrated her heart, and it was your affection for her that did keep her going in the last years.”
“While this is so much about the Judds as a duo, I want to take a moment to recognize my sister, a GOAT,” she said, pointing to the acronym that means “greatest of all time.”
Wynonna added, “I didn’t prepare anything tonight because I knew mom would probably talk the most. I’m gonna make this fast, because my heart’s broken, and I feel so blessed. It’s a very strange dynamic, to be this broken and this blessed. … Though my heart’s broken, I will continue to sing, because that’s what we do.”
In a Saturday statement on Naomi’s passing, Ashley and Wynonna said, “Today we sisters experienced a tragedy. We lost our beautiful mother to the disease of mental illness. We are shattered. We are navigating profound grief and know that as we loved her, she was loved by her public. We are in unknown territory.”
— ashley judd (@ashley judd)
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In 2016, Naomi told “Good Morning America” host Robin Roberts that she suffered from “extreme” and “severe depression” that often left her homebound.
“[Fans] see me in rhinestones, you know, with glitter in my hair, that really is who I am,” she said at the time. “But then I would come home and not leave the house for three weeks, and not get out of my pajamas, and not practice normal hygiene. It was really bad.”
Naomi also authored 2016 book “River of Time: My Descent into Depression and How I Emerged with Hope,” of which she said, “If I live through this, I want someone to be able to see that they can survive because there are 40 million of us out there.”
Wynonna and Ashley Judd accept The Judds Country Music Hall of Fame induction