HomeEntertainmentMusicCountry MusicLarry Strickland Reflects on Naomi Judd’s Final Days

Larry Strickland Reflects on Naomi Judd’s Final Days

by Clayton Edwards
(Photo by R. Diamond/WireImage for NARAS via Getty Images)

Naomi Judd died by suicide on April 30th of this year. Over the past few months, her family and the country music world have come to terms with the hole that her death left. Both Ashely and Wynonna Judd have shared their feelings about their mother’s passing. Ashely was the first member of the Judd family to speak to the press. Wynonna Judd has been sharing her healing process with the public during interviews as well as with her fans on her current tour. More recently, Naomi’s widower Larry Strickland opened up about her final days and how her death changed him.

Usually, you wouldn’t see Larry Stickland’s name in the news alongside his wife or her daughters. He was content to stay out of the spotlight. In a recent interview with People, he explained, “I was used to staying in the background. But, after going through what our family’s gone through – the tragedy, the trauma – it changes you.”

The tragedy and trauma connected to Namoi’s death gave Larry Strickland a new purpose. “I’m willing to do whatever I can to hopefully help anyone not go through what our family has,” he said. With that in mind, he has been sharing his experience with Namoi’s mental illness and what she was like in her final days.

Larry Strickland Reflects on His Wife’s Final Days

From the outside looking in, it looked like things were going well for Naomi Judd. She and Wynonna were ready to kick off another farewell tour and they were set to be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame the day after she died. However, Larry Strickland revealed things looked much different behind the scenes. “She had several therapists that she was seeing and her energy level had gotten really low. She was getting really weak,” he said.

Larry Strickland tried to put what depression feels like into perspective for those who don’t understand. “Think of the very worst day of your whole life – someone passed away, you lost your job, you found out you’re being betrayed, that your child had a rare disease – you can take all of those at once and put them together and that’s what depression feels like.”

In the past, Namoi Judd was open about her struggles with mental health issues. However, no one knew just how bad it was. Even Larry Strickland didn’t understand how bad it was and he was with her every day taking care of her. “I just feel like I might have overdone it,” Strickland said. Looking back on his wife’s final days, he recalled, “I was trying to get her to eat, I handled her medications, and had to make sure she had what she needed.”

“I look back and just wish I had been holding her and comforting her instead of pushing her. I don’t know if that would’ve helped, but it certainly wouldn’t have hurt,” Strickland said.