Family and Friends Pay Tribute to Mindy McCready at Nashville Memorial Service
Fellow stars, friends and family turned out to celebrate the life of singer Mindy McCready at a memorial service in Nashville on Wednesday (March 6). McCready died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound last month at the age of 37.
Country stars Lorrie Morgan, Bryan White and Bekka Bramlett all sang at the service. White performed 'What I Already Know' by Point of Grace. Morgan and Bramlett went the more traditional route, with Morgan singing 'Ave Maria,' while Bramlett performed an acoustic version of 'How Great Thou Art.' Bramlett then led the crowd in singing 'Kumbaya.'
Morgan spoke of both McCready's triumphs and her tragedies. The two were on the same label at the height of McCready's success, when she scored hits such as 'Ten Thousand Angels' and 'Guys Do It All the Time.'
"She achieved many of her dreams with No. 1 records and fame," Morgan said (quote via CBS News). "But we all know fame and fortune do not ensure happiness."
The singer also fondly recalled getting called onto the carpet with McCready by their label head for their too-rowdy antics at an industry function. “We became instant friends with a lot in common, music and heartache,” Morgan recalled (quote via MSN). “Mindy was a bright spot in our lives, but nothing that bright burns forever.”
McCready's mother and brothers were in attendance at the memorial service, but her father sent a letter to be read by McCready's cousion, Ashley Webb, explaining that he preferred to mourn privately. “How I wish with all my heart she would have let us help her," he wrote.
Another cousin, Tristan White, said, “Please let this memorial be a reminder to us to help someone else from choosing this end.”
McCready's fame as a performer was short-lived, but her ensuing infamy from a long string of drug arrests, sex scandals, suicide attempts and relationship troubles dogged her until the end of her life. “We should judge less and support more, especially in our music community,” said friend and former band member and producer Jimmy Nichols.
He said he'd heard from McCready in the days before her death. She was looking for his help with a song she hoped to release, but told him that all she really wanted was to regain custody of her children. Sadly, it was to be the last time they spoke.
"I love you, Mindy. Rest well," Nichols said. "You have so many angels guarding your soul tonight."