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Naomi Judd, Country Music Matriarch of The Judds Remembered for Her Faith: 'God Holds my World Together'

05-01-2022
(AP Photo/Josh Anderson, File)
(AP Photo/Josh Anderson, File)

Country music sensation Naomi Judd passed away Saturday at the age of 76. 

Daughters, Wynonna and Ashley, announced her death, saying, "Today we sisters experienced a tragedy. We lost our beautiful mother to the disease of mental illness," the statement reads. "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."

Naomi's husband Larry Strickland also confirmed the news of her passing in a statement.

"Entertainment icon Naomi Judd passed away April 30, 2022, outside of Nashville. Her husband, Larry Strickland, of 32 years will not be making any further statements. Naomi Judd's family requests privacy during this heartbreaking time. No additional information will be released at this time."

Naomi and Wynonna formed The Judds during the 1980s and went on to win five Grammy awards. 

Notable songs included, "Love Can Build a Bridge" in 1990, "Mama He's Crazy" in 1984, "Why Not Me" in 1984, "Turn It Loose" in 1988, "Girls Night Out" in 1985, "Rockin' With the Rhythm of the Rain" in 1986 and "Grandpa" in 1986.

After soaring to the top of country music, the duo split in 1991 after doctors diagnosed Naomi with hepatitis C. Wynonna continued making music as a solo artist.

After The Judds separated, Naomi fought a tough battle with depression. During a 2018 interview with CBN, she revealed how her Christian faith helped her overcome those dark days.

"I had to be cheerful for the kids," she told CBN. "I always had, you know, in the book of Hebrews, I think it's chapter 11, verse 1, where it says, 'Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.' I always had this sense that there was something on the other side. That there was something better." 

Naomi told CBN that at one point, she even contemplated ending her life.

"Got so bad, I was actually suicidal. I'm certainly not ashamed to say that I was on some anti-depressant medications," she said. "I believe there are times in life where we have to raise our hand and say I need help. I found a good doctor."

Naomi continued, "I have faith. I believe in God and I've gotten through all this stuff because of those three things: my faith, my hope and my belief in an eternal God."

In 2005, she transitioned to talk show host with the launch of "Naomi's New Morning" where she sat down with guests to share inspirational stories about faith.

During an interview with Belief Net, Naomi was asked who her dream guest was for the show.

"If I could have one guest, it would definitely be Jesus Christ," she replied. "God holds my world together. It's as simple as that."

Naomi and Wynonna were due to celebrate their induction into Nashville's Country Music Hall of Fame on Sunday.

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