Dolly Parton Pays Tribute to Naomi Judd: ‘Just Know That I Will Always Love You’

Dolly Parton tapped a line from one of her most famous songs to pay tribute to her beloved friend Naomi Judd. Parton posted a heartfelt note on Monday (May 2) in which she reminisced about her fellow country superstar and offered condolences while also tipping her hat to The Juddsinduction into the Country Music Hall of Fame on Sunday night.


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“I was so shocked to hear about Naomi’s passing. Naomi and I were close. We were very similar. We were the same age and both Capricorns,” Paton wrote. “We loved big hair, makeup and music. I have always loved Ashley, Wynonna and Naomi. They’ve always been like sisters to me.”

Parton congratulated the mother/daughter duo for their induction and expressed regret that she couldn’t be there to celebrate with them, but said she could hear “Naomi saying now, ‘Oh well, a day late and a Dolly short.’ Congratulations and condolences are both in order. Just know that I will always love you.”

The singer joined a large chorus of fellow country stars who’ve memorialized Naomi, including Reba McEntire, Carrie Underwood, Maren Morris, Tim McGraw, Cole Swindell, Travis Tritt and many more.

Naomi Judd, 76, died of suicide on Saturday after battling depression for many years. “Today we sisters experienced a tragedy. We lost our beautiful mother to the disease of mental illness,” read a statement from sister Wynonna and Ashley Judd over the weekend. “We are shattered. We are navigating profound grief and know that as we loved her, she was loved by her public. We are in unknown territory.” The statement did not elaborate further.

The mother-daughter pair of Naomi and Wynonna scored 14 No. 1 songs in a career that spanned nearly three decades. After rising to the top of country music, they called it quits in 1991 after doctors diagnosed Naomi Judd with hepatitis.

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