During the ceremony, Winona Judd and Ashley Judd thought about the difficulty of honoring their mother’s accomplishments so soon after losing her.
“I didn’t attend anything tonight because I knew my mum would talk the most,” Winona told the audience.
Winona and Naomi Judd have performed together for decades as mother and daughter singing duo The Judds.
She said, “I’m going to do this so fast, because my heart is broken, and I feel so lucky. It’s a very strange dynamic, to be so broken and so blessed.”
“We will do so with heavy hearts,” Young wrote.
Judd died at the age of 76, her two daughters announced Saturday, hours before the country music legend was to be celebrated alongside Winona at the Nashville Museum’s Medal Gala.
In their announcement posted on Twitter, actress and activist Winona and Ashley wrote that they “lost our beautiful mother to mental illness.”
“My mom loved you so much and so appreciated your love for her,” Ashley said of her mother as she cried at Sunday’s party. “I’m sorry she couldn’t stand it until today. Your appreciation for her and your appreciation for her really penetrated her heart, and it was your affection for her that kept her going these last years.”
Ray Charles, Eddie Byers and Pete Drake were also inducted into the Hall of Fame during Sunday’s gala.
“We are dealing with a deep sadness and know we loved her, her fans loved her,” her daughters said when we announced Naomi’s death. “We are in uncharted territory.”
The mother and daughter began performing together as a professional act in the early 1980s, and soon spawned a string of blockbuster songs such as “Mama He’s Crazy” and “Love Can Build a Bridge” and sold over 20 million records. Between 1984 and 1991, The Judds won five Grammys and earned 14 singles in the Hall of Fame.
While Wynonna sang the lead, Hall of Fame said: “Naomi delivered the harmony, wit, and relaxed stage presence that captivated audiences.”
The announcement was updated after news of Judd’s death, stating that “the Museum, the Judds family, fans and the entertainment industry mourn her sudden passing.”