Loretta Lynn Remembers Late Husband on What Would Have Been Their 74th Anniversary

“I sure wish he was still here!”

Loretta Lynn took to social media to pay tribute to her late husband Oliver "Doolittle" Lynn Jr. on what would have been the couple's 74th wedding anniversary this week.

"74 years ago, my life changed forever when I married Doolittle," Loretta, 89, captioned a smiling photo of the two of them. "We had 48 years together and I sure wish he was still here! I miss him. #loveisthefoundation #anniversary #74"

Loretta and Doolittle, also known as "Mooney," and "Doo" married on January 10, 1948, when she was just 15 years old, and he was 21.

The country icon recalled how they first came to be in her best-selling memoir, Coal Miner's Daughter. Lynn, who grew up in poverty in rural Butcher Hollow, Kentucky, wrote that the first time a car ever made its way up the dirt path to her family's home "was when Doolittle came a-courting in his jeep."

The couple went on to raise six children together while touring the country and promoting Loretta's music.

Loretta Lynn and Husband
Bettmann/Getty Images

Their 48-year marriage was notoriously tumultuous. Doolittle was an alcoholic who frequently cheated and even physically abused Loretta. Her hits "Fist City" and "Don't Come Home A-Drinkin' (With Lovin' on Your Mind)" were both inspired by their marriage. And yet, Loretta stayed by his side for the sake of their children. And, as she told CBS News in 2002, "because I loved him, and he loved me."

"I've never written a song that my husband wasn't in," Loretta added. "Every song I wrote, but he didn't know which line he was in."

Doolittle died in 1996 at the age of 69. His death was attributed to heart failure and complications due to diabetes.

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