Wynonna Judd Mourns Loss Of Loretta Lynn: 'Loretta Was Like An Aunt To Me'

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Wynonna Judd has always looked up to Loretta Lynn.

The “Why Not Me” artist reflected on Lynn’s impact on her life, paying tribute to one of the most legendary country music trailblazers of all time. Lynn’s family confirmed in a statement that she “passed away peacefully this morning, October 4th, in her sleep at home at her beloved ranch in Hurricane Mills.” She was 90.

Judd said that as long as she can remember, Lynn has been her favorite artist, and Coal Miner’s Daughter is her favorite movie. She became familiar with Lynn’s music as she grew up listening to the Grand Ole Opry, and met her fellow Kentucky native at age 20. IN the years that followed, Lynn was like family to Judd, who wrote in a heartfelt tribute:

“When people ask me what my favorite movie is, ‘Coal Miner’s Daughter’ is my number one. Loretta has always been my favorite, from the time I can remember. As a young girl, I learned about Loretta from listening to the Grand Ole Opry. I met her when I was just 20 years old. As I walked into the CMA’s for the first time in 1984, she was the first person who came over and hugged me. Loretta was like an aunt to me. I would call her and she would tell me stories. Some of my fondest memories of Loretta come from her telling me all about her life in Butcher Holler. During one of my recent visits to Hurricane Mills, she gave me a Bible and a crocheted doily that her Mama made. I will cherish those gifts forever. It’s really hard for me to comprehend life without her. I will miss our chats on the phone, the sound of her voice telling me she loves me, and hearing her beautiful laughter {at my jokes}…”

Judd shared a snippet of one of her calls with Lynn as she got ready for the 2022 CMT Music Awards in April, where she took the stage with her mother, Naomi Judd. That was The Judds final public performance, a powerful rendition of “Love Can Build A Bridge,” before Naomi died later that month at age 76. Judd asked Lynn whether she had any advice before appearing on TV. Lynn hilariously responded: “Yeah, keep your drawers on,” and, through laughter, Judd assured her: “Well, I’ll try.”

“We mustn’t ever forget how important this woman was…IS…to country music,” Judd said on Tuesday, following Lynn’s death. “Rest In Peace my beloved ‘Retty.’ I will always love you. 🤍”