Crystal Gayle Mourns Sister Loretta Lynn’s Death: ‘World Lost a Legend’

by Lauren Boisvert
(Image Credit: Bettmann/Getty Images)

The country music world has lost another legend in Loretta Lynn, who passed today at 90. Her family confirmed her death. She passed away peacefully in her sleep at her Hurricane Mills, Tennessee ranch.

“Our precious mom, Loretta Lynn, passed away peacefully this morning, October 4th, in her sleep at home in her beloved ranch in Hurricane Mills,” Lynn’s family said in a statement. She is survived by her four children, Patsy Lynn Russell, Peggy Lynn, Clara Marie Lynn, and Ernest Ray Lynn, as well as many grandchildren. Her two oldest children, Betty Sue Lynn and Jack Benny Lynn, died in 2013 and 1984, respectively. She was married to Oliver Vanetta “Doolittle” Lynn from 1948 until his death in 1996.

Loretta Lynn’s sister, fellow country music star Crystal Gayle, mourned her older sister’s death with a statement on social media. She posted a beautiful portrait of Loretta on Twitter, accompanied by a few simple words to express her grief. “The world lost a legend. We lost a sister. Love you Loretta,” she wrote.

From Coal Miner’s Daughters to Superstars: Loretta Lynn’s Relationship With Her Sister, Crystal Gayle

Loretta Lynn was an icon through and through, and fans are deep in mourning over the country music queen. But, she started from nothing, born into poverty. Eventually, she worked her way into the big leagues through sheer hard work and her immeasurable talent. She built a better life for herself and her family, inspired countless other women to pursue country music, and shared her story with the world. Additionally, she was a trailblazer as well: she was the first woman to win Entertainer of the Year from both the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.

Crystal Gayle had a special, close relationship with her older sister, despite the 19-year age difference. Loretta was born on April 14, 1932, while Crystal was born on January 9, 1951. Despite their differences, both in age and personality, they were delightfully close.

In February 2017, Gayle spoke to journalist Dan Rather, via The Boot, about her relationship with her sister. She claimed that any rumors about bad blood between them were just that: rumors and gossip. Gayle said they bicker on occasion, but who doesn’t bicker with their siblings? Overall, she said that she looked up to Loretta Lynn.

“You know, I look up to my sister,” she said. “We both have flaws in different ways, but we’re not gonna tell what they are, you know? But, I mean, we love each other. We overlook [the differences].” Gayle also shared that Lynn was more like their mother, while Gayle, on the other hand, claimed she is more like their father in that he was shyer and more reserved. “My sister is so out there,” said Gayle. “She can talk a mile a minute.”