NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - APRIL 11: Naomi Judd of The Judds attends the 2022 CMT Music Awards at Nashville Municipal Auditorium on April 11, 2022 in Nashville, Tennessee.
Jeff Kravitz/Getty Images for CMT

CMT to Air Naomi Judd's Memorial Service Live From the Ryman


CMT announced on Wednesday (May 11) that it will air Naomi Judd: A River of Time Celebration, a memorial service from the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tenn., live and commercial-free this Sunday (May 15) at 6 p.m. EST.

The special will air as part of a partnership with Sandbox Live and the Judd family.

"We are sincerely privileged to work alongside Wynonna, Ashley and [Naomi's husband, Larry Strickland] to present this live celebration of life for their mother and wife Naomi," read a statement from CMT. "While we all continue to deeply mourn the loss of such a legendary artist, we are honored to commemorate her legacy alongside the country community, her friends, family and legions of fans across the world at the perfect venue: the Mother Church of country music. This special will celebrate her timeless voice, unforgettable spirit and the immense impact she left on our genre through the best form of healing we have-- music."

Per a press release, Ashley McBryde, Brandi Carlile, Little Big Town, the Gaithers and the duo of Emmylou Harris and Allison Russell are among the scheduled performers.


Good Morning America co-anchor and family friend Robin Roberts will host the event, with Carly Pearce and TV and radio personality Cody Allan hosting CMT's broadcast. Bono, Morgan Freeman, Oprah Winfrey and Salma Hayek are among the friends of Naomi's from outside of country music scheduled to participate via video messages.

An encore will air exclusively on CMT at 10 p.m. EST.

News of Naomi's death broke on April 30, with a statement from daughters Wynonna and Ashley Judd revealing that they'd lost their mother "to the disease of mental illness." Ashley Judd has since confirmed that her mother died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

One day later, The Judds --the mother-daughter duo of Naomi and Wynonna Judd-- entered the Country Music Hall of Fame during the institution's medallion ceremony.


Taste of Country reported on Wednesday that Dolly Parton, Vince Gill and Ricky Skaggs were among the family friends making special appearances at a private memorial service for Naomi held last Saturday (May 7) at the CMA Theater at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.

The Judds' final televised performance of Grammy award-winner "Love Can Build a Bridge" was aired during this year's CMT Music Awards.

READ MORE: Wynonna Judd Shares Throwback Photo of Naomi Judd on Social Media For Mother's Day: 'I Miss Her'

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