2022 CMA Awards: Wynonna Judd Thanks Fans for ‘Love and Support’ After Mom Naomi’s Death

by Taylor Cunningham
(ABC via Getty Images)

Wynonna Judd is feeling thankful for the “love and support” the country music community has given her this year.

The legendary artist was on hand at the 56th annual CMA Awards to present Brothers Osbourne with the Vocal Duo of the Year. But before she did, she took a moment to speak of her grief that came from suddenly losing her mother, Naomi Judd, in April. And Wynonna admitted that her fans and friends in the industry helped her make it through her hardest days.

“In death there is life, and here I am,” she began. “Thank you for your love and your support.”

“These past six months have been a time to grieve and a time to be grateful. I am humbled and honored tonight to still have a seat at the table of country music,” she continued. “I have the opportunity of presenting the CMA award for duo, which mom and I won seven times.”

Wynonna and Naomi sang as The Judds in the 1980s and 1990s. The group had planned to go on a farewell tour this year, but Naomi tragically took her own life following years of mental health struggles.

“To be here tonight and to be in the presence of Wynonna, while winning this award, will be one of the biggest highlights of my entire life,” TJ Osborne said as he accepted the award for the fifth consecutive year.

“It’s an absolute honor,” added John Osborne. “We’ve learned so much from you and your family.”

Wynonna Judd Had Reached the Sixth Stage of Grief

Wynonna began The Judd’s Farewell Tour this summer and wrapped up last month. To honor her mother and also ensure she moves forward with her life, she decided to carry through with the event with the help of several friends. To complete the duets, Martina McBride, Ashley McBryde, Brandi Carlile, Faith Hill, and Trisha Yearwood took turns stepping in.

The concerts proved to be cathartic for the 58-year-old. And during a recent interview with 20/20, she admitted that she’s found the sixth stage of grief—meaning.

“When you lose somebody you love, there is no manual,” she said. “If it takes you six months or six years…I think sometimes we think, ‘Oh, snap out of it. It’s not that big of a deal.’ No, it is a big deal and it’s okay to take time.”

“There are five stages of grief, they say,” Wynonna added. “There are actually six. The sixth stage is finding meaning in all of it. When I ask ‘Why?’ the thing that comes to me is, ‘No ask what. What can you do?’ I can be honest and tell my story and hopefully, someone will listen to the words.”