Naomi Judd died by suicide, Ashley Judd confirmed in an emotional interview that aired Thursday morning on Good Morning America.
Ashley Judd told ABC News‘Diane Sawyer that the Judd family agreed that she share the cause of her mother’s death.
“She used a weapon. A firearm, ”Ashley Judd said. “So that’s the piece of information we are very uncomfortable sharing. but understand that we’re in a position that you know, if we do not say it, someone else is going to. “
Ashley and her sister, Wynonna, announced on April 30 that they had lost their mother “to the disease of mental illness.” Naomi Judd was 76.
Naomi Judd had been outspoken about her battle with depression. She had been open about her mental health in her 2016 book, River of Time: My Descent Into Depression and How I Emerged With Hope.
Ashley Judd was visiting from her home in Tennessee on the day of her mother’s passing. Ashley told Sawyer that she discovered her mother after it happened.
“I have both grief and trauma from discovering her,” Ashley Judd said.
Naomi Judd died the day before she and Wynonna were to be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame.
Ashley Judd said “my mother, our mother, could not hang on until she was inducted into the Hall of Fame by her peers.
“That is the level of catastrophe of what was going on inside of her – because the barrier between the regard in which they held her could not penetrate into her heart, and the lie the disease told her was so convincing,” Ashley Judd said .
Naomi and Wynonna won five Grammy awards as the country duo The Judds. The mother-daughter duo was scheduled to perform at Dickies Arena in Fort Worth on Oct. 22 and at the Choctaw Casino & Resort in Durant, Okla., On Oct. 21.
In the interview with Sawyer, Ashley read from a letter that Wynonna sent:
“I’m not ready yet to speak publicly about what happened, so I know you understand why I’m not there today. We will do this piece differently. We have each other, and I’m grateful we’re connected as we walk together through this storm. I just can not believe she’s gone. ”
CMT and Sandbox Entertainment announced Wednesday that they are collaborating with the Judd family to honor Naomi’s life with Naomi Judd: A River of Time Celebration, a live event airing Sunday. The broadcast will include a commercial-free public memorial service from the Ryman Auditorium at 5 pm, Dallas time.
Lifelines of support
Here For Texas Mental Health Navigation Line: Grant Halliburton Foundation initiative that connects North Texans with mental-health resources customized to each caller at 972-525-8181, or go to HereForTexas.com.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 24-hour crisis hotline at 1-800-273-8255. Confidential online chat is available at suicidepreventionlifeline.org.
Crisis Text Line: 24-hour support by texting HOME to 741741. More information at crisistextline.org.
North Texas Behavioral Health Authority: 24-hour crisis hotline at 1-866-260-8000 or go to ntbha.org.
Suicide and Crisis Center of North Texas: Speak to a trained counselor on the 24-hour hotline at 214-828-1000 or 800-273-8255 or go to sccenter.org.
Dallas Metrocare Services: For help, call 1-877-283-2121 or go to metrocareservices.org.