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Mindy McCready Memorial Service: Singer Remembered for Her Talents and Struggles

Rick Diamond, Getty Images

Mindy McCready was remembered for her wit, her faith in God and for her considerable singing talent at a memorial service Wednesday (March 6) in Nashville. Family, friends and members of the music industry attended the service held at the Cathedral of the Incarnation, to recall the life and career of the troubled star who died at her own hand last month at 37 years old.

In addition to three of Mindy’s recordings being played during the service, including her rendition of Garth Brooks‘ “The Dance,” singers Bryan White, Lorrie Morgan and Bekka Bramlett also performed a mix of traditional hymns and contemporary spiritual-themed songs. Lorrie Morgan sang “Ave Maria,” and Bekka Bramlett delivered an acoustic version of “How Great Thou Art,” which she followed by spontaneously leading attendees in singing “Kumbaya.”

Mindy’s Nashville publicist and friend, Kat Atwood, said of the singer, “Mindy was witty. She was clever. She was a wildcat. She was a lady … Music was her life, her therapy, her escape, her victory and her tragedy.”

Speaking of her former RCA labelmate, Lorrie shared that the two of them, who attended a number of parties thrown by the record company in the 1990s, were once reprimanded by the head of the label for wearing outfits that were too skimpy, and also for indulging in too much tequila and dancing on the bar.

“We became instant friends with a lot in common, music and heartache,” Lorrie said, recalling her first time meeting the young singer, whose early success at the label earned her a double-platinum-selling album. “Mindy was a bright spot in our lives, but nothing that bright burns forever.”

Her friend and former band member Jimmy Nichols said of Mindy, “Her outward strength hid a vulnerability that percolated from deep within. She had a profound faith in God, but she also felt God let her down.”

He also noted that although her greatest success in the music business was relatively short-lived, she remained in the headlines for all the difficulties she faced post-success. “I find it interesting to think that her short, two year, powerful and extraordinary career made her relevant to the industry and the public as a recording artist, public figure and superstar, yet the last 14 years of ‘trash talking’ made her relevant to headlines worldwide. We should judge less and support more, especially in our music community.”

Mindy’s mother and two brothers attended the service, and two of her cousins, Tristan White and Ashley Webb, shared their memories of her, with Webb reading a letter from Mindy’s father explaining that he was chose not to attend but rather to mourn in private. “How I wish with all my heart she would have let us help her,” he said in the letter.

Donations and pledge cards were collected at the service for a fund being set up to benefit Mindy’s two young sons, Zander and Zayne.

Watch a Video on Mindy’s Final Music

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