Ashley and Wynonna Judd have admittedly struggled to keep close over the years. But after their mother, Naomi, died earlier this year, they realized that they’re each other’s best friends.
Naomi passed away by suicide on April 30, 2022, and the sisters have struggled with guilt and anger since learning the cause of her death. But they have publically shared that they’re taking the time they need to properly process and grieve their loss on their own terms. And they’ve come to realize that their shared pain has brought them closer to each other.
“We both kind of look at each other like, ‘I’ve got you,’ right? And we look at each other and we say, ‘Yeah,'” Wynonna said on Sept. 25’s CBS Sunday Morning. “We’re so united right now. I think more so than we have been in a long time.”
Wynonna Judd Didn’t Know Naomi ‘Was At the Place She Was’
Naomi Judd had been open about her lifelong battle with mental health for years, and Wynonna shared that her mother had “incredibly great days in the middle of the dark days.” But she never realized how deep Naomi’s depression was. So when she got the call that the 76-year-old had died from a self-inflicted gunshot, she was in “shock.”
“I did not know that she was at the place she was at when she ended it because she had had episodes before and she got better,” Wynonna continued. “That’s the challenge with mental illness. It’s really really mysterious. And that’s what I live in is like, ‘Was there anything I should have looked for? Or should I have known?’ I didn’t.”
Nearly five months after Naomi’s passing, Wynonna Judd admitted that she is still “incredibly angry” about the entire situation, and she doesn’t expect that to change. However, she will continue to honor her mother’s memory through their shared music.
The mother-daughter duo helmed The Judds through the 1980s and 1990s. Together, they won five Grammys and became one of the most legendary bands in Country music history. Before her passing, Naomi was preparing to join Wynonna on a reunion tour. Despite losing her other half, Wynonna will head out for the concerts series on Sept. 30.
“As I walk out on stage that first night, I’ll probably say something like, ‘It’s not supposed to be like this,’ because it’s not, right? It’s supposed to be the two of us. And I’m gonna be angry because she’s not there,” she said. “I wanna come out on stage and sing from my toenails a song that helps someone out in that audience. … It’s about me singing to help someone feel better. That’s always in my spirit.”