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Monday, May 2, 2016

Loretta Lynn Shares The Heartbreaking Journey That Led Her To Jesus Christ

Loretta Lynn is arguably one of country music’s greatest legends of all time. But there are a few things about the talented singer many Americans don’t know.

I’ve always loved Loretta Lynn, but after learning a bit more about her life, I must admit that my admiration for this incredible woman has grown all the more.

In honor of Loretta Lynn’s 84th birthday last month (April 14), we’re taking a look back on the humble and challenging beginnings of this remarkable woman’s life.

Born on April 14, 1932, Loretta Lynn is an American country music singer-songwriter whose work spans over more than 50 years. But the “Queen of Country Music” hasn’t always had it easy.

Loretta was the second of eight children born to a poor coal miner named Theodore Melvin “Ted” Webb and his wife, Clara Marie “Clary,” in a small cabin in Butcher Hollow, Kentucky.
Loretta told Country Living, “My mommy and daddy had 8 kids, so there were 10 of us living in a small cabin in the mountains (pictured below). The winters were cold, so my mommy glued newspapers and pages from old Sears Roebuck catalogs to the wall to help keep the cold out. We didn’t have money for wallpaper, but my mommy made that old house stay warm and beautiful.”
To this day, you can visit Loretta Lynn’s humble childhood home, which is now maintained and preserved by Loretta’s younger brother, Herman.

Loretta was just shy of 16-years-old when she married 21-year-old Oliver “Doolittle” Lynn (aka “Mooney”) on January 10, 1948.

Their whirlwind romance was the definition of love at first sight. The young couple tied the knot just one month after they first met. Loretta’s life with Doolittle helped inspire the music she wrote.


One year into marriage the Lynns left Kentucky and moved to the logging community of Custer, Washington, while Lynn was seven months pregnant with the first of their six children.


Lynn’s hubby bought her a $17 Harmony guitar from Sears & Roebuck when she was 18. Over the course of the next three years, Lynn taught herself to play that little guitar.

Lynn began singing in local clubs in the late 1950s with the help, insistence, and support from Doolittle. Eventually, the talented singer started her own band, “Loretta and the Trailblazers.”

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But despite Loretta’s undeniable talent, she wasn’t always successful. Even when Loretta had her debut in Nashville, she and her husband stayed in their car the night before because they couldn’t afford a hotel.
After years of traveling the road and chasing her dreams, Loretta finally made it big. On February 2, 1960, 28-year-old Loretta Lynn signed her first contract and released a single entitled “Honky Tonk Girl.” 
Sadly, Lynn’s beloved father wouldn’t live to see his daughter become famous; he died the year before her big break.

When she wasn’t writing music, Loretta had her hands full raising her six beautiful children.

The Lynns had three children by the time Loretta was 19; and by the age of 20 she gave birth to their fourth child, Clara “Cissy.”
Loretta’s first song was written while she with her beautiful little family. Loretta shared, “One day we went fishing. I don’t know why I just sat down and wrote a song. But I remember being shocked that those lyrics just came pourin’ out of me.”

The beautiful singer had six children altogether with her husband, Doolittle:

– Betty Sue Lynn, November 26, 1948 – July 29, 2013 (aged 64) from emphysema
– Jack Benny Lynn, December 7, 1949
– Ernest Ray Lynn, April 12, 1951
– Clara Marie Lynn (Cissy), April 7, 1952
– Twins: Peggy Jean and Patsy Eileen Lynn, August 6, 1964

How Loretta managed a successful career in addition to her very-full household, we will never know!


Loretta Lynn has received numerous awards for her groundbreaking role in country music, including awards from both the Country Music Association and Academy of Country Music as a duet partner and individual artist. Lynn remains the most awarded female country recording artist. Loretta has 16 No. 1 hits, and over 70 chart-topping songs.

Loretta Lynn was a trailblazer in the music industry, paving the way for women across America.


In 2013, President Obama awarded Lynn the Presidential Medal of Freedom, acknowledging her legacy of “courageously breaking barriers in an industry long dominated by men.”
Obama awarded Lynn with the Medal and shared, “Lorretta Lynn was 19 the first time she won big at the local fair. Her canned vegetables brought home 17 blue ribbons and made her ‘Canner of the Year.’ Now that’s impressive! For a girl from Butcher Hollow, Kentucky, that was fame. Fortunately for us she decided to try her hand at other things than canning. Her first guitar cost $17 and with it this coal miner’s daughter gave voice to a generation, singing what no one wanted to talk about and saying what no one wanted to think about. Now, over 50 years after she cut her first record and canned her first vegetables, Loretta Lynn still reigns as the rule-breaking, record-setting Queen of Country Music.”

But despite her unparalleled success, Loretta Lynn hasn’t always had it easy. And for many years behind closed doors, Loretta’s life was almost anything but glamorous.

An unimaginable tragedy struck for the Lynn family on July 22, 1984. It was on that fateful day that Loretta’s second child and eldest son, Jack Benny, died tragically.

At only 34-years-old, Jack died while trying to cross the Duck River at the family’s ranch in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee. It was a heartbreaking a horrendous tragedy.

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But Jack’s death wasn’t Loretta’s only hardship. Behind her flawless smile, Loretta Lynn hid a dark secret.


In a shocking interview with CBS News in 2002, Lynn revealed the heartbreaking details of her husband’s scandalous affairs. Loretta explained that Doolittle would ‘regularly’ cheat, abuse her, and once even had the audacity to leave her while she was giving birth.
Lynn and her husband fought frequently; Lynn choked back the tears and forced a smile as she confessed, “[H]e never hit me one time that I didn’t hit him back twice.” Adding that her marriage with Mooney was “one of the hardest love stories.”

Lynn recalls in one of her autobiographies:
“I married Doo when I wasn’t but a child, and he was my life from that day on. But as important as my youth and upbringing was, there’s something else that made me stick to Doo. He thought I was something special, more special than anyone else in the world, and never let me forget it. That belief would be hard to shove out the door. Doo was my security, my safety net. And just remember, I’m explainin’, not excusin’… Doo was a good man and a hard worker. But he was an alcoholic, and it affected our marriage all the way through.”

It’s beyond obvious that many of Loretta’s heartbreaking songs were written thanks to her personal experiences throughout her roller-coaster of a marriage. But despite her husband’s horrendous behavior, Loretta never gave up on her marriage.

They’d been through hell and back, but Loretta’s whole-hearted devotion to her husband shined through her lyrics. And slowly but surely, Doolittle changed his ways.

Once while the couple was on a television show together, Loretta sang “Love Is The Fountian” to Doolittle as he held back tears, it was simply beautiful.

The couple was married for over 47 years when Doolittle passed away in 1996. For the last several years of his life, Lynn spent many hours caring for him due to his heart problems and complications from diabetes. Eventually, Doolittle’s hearing and vision also failed.
“My husband was my priority, I’d sleep in a couch right by the bed. If he made one grunt, I was awake. Not one move did he make that I wasn’t awake. You know, I’d still be doing it if he was here.”
Lynn’s famous hit song “I’m All He’s Got (But He’s Got All Of Me)” was dedicated to her husband after he passed away. And I could barely hold back the tears as I heard Lynn’s powerful tribute to her late husband.

Perhaps the reason for Loretta Lynn’s unparalleled success is her unashamed faith in Jesus Christ. Loretta shared,
“My daddy’s first cousin was a preacher, Elzie Banks, who I wrote a song about. All of us kids would sing in Sunday school as long as we could carry a tune. Gospel music and church is what I knew. We knew Sunday school, and the preacher, Elzie Banks. We had church in a little one-room schoolhouse that my great-grandfather built,” Lynn said.

Loretta’s faith is made obvious throughout her lyrics. And over the years, Loretta has released three gospel albums.

Her hit song,“Ten Thousand Angels” is just one of Loretta’s powerful gospel songs that gives all glory to her Savior, Jesus Christ.
Time and time again, Loretta has unashamedly sung the lyrics, “He could have called ten thousand angels to destroy the world and set Him free, He could have called ten thousand angels but He died alone for you and me.”
There has never been, and will never be, a country music artist more influential than Loretta Lynn. 

Loretta Lynn

Thank you Loretta Lynn, for paving the way for women in America. Your unwavering devotion to your family, unashamed faith in Jesus Christ, and God-given talent is simply undeniable. America needs more women like Loretta Lynn. Please share if you agree!