Millions of Americans struggled with their mental health well before COVID-19, but the pandemic hasn’t made shouldering mental illness any easier – an issue brought to light over the weekend after the death of country music star Naomi Judd. 

Judd was 76 years old and the mother of the country music duo The Judds, performing for decades alongside her daughter Wynonna. On Saturday, Wynonna and her sister Ashley announced their mother had died, “to the disease of mental illness.”  

Judd was among the nearly 52.9 million Americans with a mental illness, a statistic that has only risen since the start of the pandemic.

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