Ashley Judd paid tribute to her mother, Naomi Judd, in an essay marking the first Mother’s Day after her death.
The 76-year-old country star reportedly died by suicide a day before the country music duo, The Judds, were inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame.
The late country star and her daughter Wynonna formed a musical duo, The Judds, in the early 1980s and were both inducted earlier this week.
Actress Ashley accompanied her sister Wynonna to the Country Music Awards to accept the Hall of Fame induction.
Ashley pens a tribute to Naomi Judd on Mother’s Day
Ashley Judd wrote an article for USA Today to honor her mom, Naomi.
In the essay, Judd reflected on her first Mother’s day since her death by suicide.
“This Sunday is abruptly, shockingly, my first Mother’s Day without my mama. She died just hours before her peers at the Country Music Hall of Fame could demonstrate to her how much they esteem her,” Ashley wrote, continuing:
“She died just days before my sister and I could show her again how much we love and honor her. It wasn’t supposed to be this way. I was supposed to visit her on Sunday, to give her a box of old-fashioned candy, our family tradition. We were supposed to have sweet delight in each others’ easy presence.”
“Instead, I am unmoored. But my heart is not empty. It is replete with gratitude for what she left behind. Her nurture and tenderness, her music and memory.”
The 54-year-old actress went on to describe her grief about her mom’s passing.
“Perhaps it’s indecorous to say, but my heart is filled with something else, too. Incandescent rage. Because my mother was stolen from me by the disease of mental illness, by the wounds she carried from a lifetime of injustices that started when she was a girl. Because she was a girl.”
Ashley Judd opens up about her mother being pregnant at 17
Judd praised her late mother’s parental skills in the essay, despite her struggling to raise her two daughters.
“My mama was an extraordinary parent under duress: She showed my sister and me the power of having a voice and using it, and there has been no greater lesson. But motherhood happened to her without her consent. She experienced an unintended pregnancy at age 17, and that led her down a road familiar to so many adolescent mothers, including poverty and gender-based violence.”
Naomi Judd gave birth to her first child Wynonna Judd at 18. After divorcing Michael Ciminella, Judd raised her children as a single parent.