It's been a little over a month since Nashville hit pause and paid homage to the late Naomi Judd after her tragic death on April 30. The legendary country singer's suicide a day before her induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame alongside her daughter Wynonna as The Judds left fans absolutely stunned.
Wynonna Judd was on hand at the event alongside sister Ashley and their stepfather, Larry Strickland, and an all-star lineup of musicians honoring the late singer's life and career. Ashley Judd started the event by taking the stage to a standing ovation and sharing a few words about her mother.
"Thank you for being in community and fellowship with us," Judd told the crowd. "Because we can pretend to care, but we cannot pretend to show up. So thank you for showing up for our mom." She also added that her mother wanted the public memorial at the Ryman Auditorium, the former home of the Grand Ole Opry, adding that she referred to the location as the "mother church."
After sharing more on her mother, Ashley Judd introduced her sister, Wynonna, for a performance of "River of Time," written by their mother. Wynonna would return for another performance later in the night and make an announcement regarding a planned farewell tour the mother-daughter team were set to embark on this fall. She said that to honor her mother, she would continue the tour they had planned together as a tribute. Wynonna performed "The Rose" with Brandi Carlile before closing the event with "Love Can Build a Bridge."
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Another emotional moment came when Judd's widowed husband, Larry Strickland, took the stage to share a message he had received by a man who met Naomi Judd on a flight, noting the iconic singer never met a stranger. "Needless to say it brought great pleasure and comfort to me," Strickland added.
Wynonna also brought a few laughs to the room in the way every memorial needs, by poking fun at family. "We're showing the world what a dysfunctional family does," the singer said with her sister and Strickland. "You show up for each other."
The tribute featured The Gaither Vocal Band in a spiritual music tribute to Judd, video messages from Salma Hayek, Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon, Bono, Morgan Freeman and Bette Midler. There were also performances by Little Big Town, Jamey Johnson, EmmyLou Harris and several others.