Entries in Mindy McCready (8)


Mindy McCready Remembered at Nashville Memorial Service

Frederick Breedon/WireImage(NASHVILLE, Tenn.) -- Former country star Mindy McCready was remembered with a small memorial service in Nashville Wednesday evening.

A little more than a hundred friends, family members and music industry colleagues gathered at The Cathedral of the Incarnation near Music Row to share music and memories of McCready, who took her life on Feb. 17 after years of public struggle.

Though McCready was celebrated by one childhood friend, Tristan White, as, “a woman who stole the show and was the life of the party,” the demons that ultimately led to her suicide couldn’t be ignored.

White read a letter from McCready’s father, Tim McCready, who was too emotional to attend the service.

In the letter, he remembered his daughter’s talents but lamented her poor life choices. He also stressed that his daughter’s two young sons were her love, and that she was in love with her late fiancé David Wilson.

Wilson was found dead in January in the same Arkansas home where Mindy took her life. Wilson’s death is still under investigation.

McCready’s friend and former label mate Lorrie Morgan remembered their camaraderie back in the ’90s. Morgan spoke of the music and heartache she and McCready had in common and said she always “felt young and had fun” with McCready at their record label parties.

Morgan also spoke of the sadness McCready always had in her eyes. She wondered aloud if anything could have really made McCready happy, and closed by saying, “There’s a special place for her star above, and it will always be there and it will never burn out.”

Lorrie Morgan also sang “Ave Maria” at the service.  A '90s hitmaker, Bryan White, and McCready’s friend Bekka Bramlett performed too. McCready’s recording of the Garth Brooks hit “The Dance” was played to close the service.

McCready’s funeral was held last week in her hometown of Fort Myers, Fla.

Her mother, Gayle Inge, attended both the funeral and Wednesday’s memorial service.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Country Singer Mindy McCready Was 'Fearful of Stigma,' Dr. Drew Says

(NEW YORK) -- Troubled country singer Mindy McCready was "devastated" after the January death of her boyfriend and "fearful of stigma and ridicule," according to Dr. Drew Pinsky, who treated her in 2009 on Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew.

McCready died Sunday of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound at her Arkansas home, police said. She was 37.

The country singer who soared to the top of the charts with her debut album, Ten Thousand Angels, struggled with substance abuse, served time in jail and fought a lengthy battle with her mother over custody of her son.

The singer appeared on the third season of Dr. Drew's VH1 show. She is the fifth person who has appeared on the show to die.

"I am deeply saddened by this awful news," Dr. Drew said in a statement posted in a VH1 blog. "My heart goes out to Mindy's family and children. She is a lovely woman who will be missed by many."

Dr. Drew said that he had not treated McCready for a few years, but "reached out to her recently" after her boyfriend and father of one of her two children, David Wilson, died in January of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

"She was devastated. Although she was fearful of stigma and ridicule, she agreed with me that she needed to make her health and safety a priority," Dr. Drew said. "Unfortunately it seems that Mindy did not sustain her treatment."

"Mental health issues can be life threatening and need to be treated with the same intensity and resources as any other dangerous potentially life threatening medical condition," the doctor's statement said. "Treatment is effective. If someone you know is suffering, please be sure he or she gets help and maintains treatment."

Deputies from the Cleburne County Sheriff's Office were dispatched to a report of gun shots fired at McCready's Heber Springs, Ark., home at around 3:30 p.m. on Sunday.

There they found McCready on the front porch. She was pronounced dead at the scene from what appeared to be a single self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to a statement from the sheriff's office.

When reached by phone today, the Cleburne County Sheriff's Office said the sheriff would be responding to questions later in the day.

McCready was ordered to enter rehab shortly after Wilson's death, and her two children, Zander, 6, and 9-month-old Zayne were taken from her. She was released after one day to undergo outpatient care.

McCready scored a number-one Billboard country hit in 1996 with "Guys Do It All the Time," but in recent years, the country crooner has received more media attention for her troubled personal life than her music.

McCready reportedly had a decade-long affair with baseball star Roger Clemens that began when she was a teen, the New York Daily News reported in 2008. Clemens' attorney at the time denied any improper relationship, but McCready discussed details of the relationship on television.

"This is sad news," Clemens said in a statement today, posted on the Houston Astros website. "I had heard over time that she was trying to get peace and direction in her life. The few times that I had met her and her manager/agent they were extremely nice."

She has been arrested multiple times on drug charges and probation violations and has been hospitalized for overdoses several times, including in 2010, when she was found unconscious at her mother's home after taking a painkiller and muscle relaxant.

Her mother, Gayle Inge, was appointed to be her son Zander's legal guardian in 2007 after McCready was arrested for violating probation on a drug-related charge. The boy's father is McCready's ex-boyfriend Billy McKnight.

Following a custody hearing in May 2011, McCready released a statement, saying, "We have progressed in a positive manner to reunite me and my son, Zander. I feel very optimistic this will happen in the near future."

But just six months later, in November 2011, she was accused of violating a court order for failing to bring Zander back to her mother in Florida after a visit. The boy was placed in foster care while McCready and her mother worked out the custody dispute.

McCready's struggle with substance abuse was broadcast in 2010 on the third season of Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew.

"You know what, I don't think I'm ever going to be one of those people that has a normal, quiet existence," McCready told ABC Radio in 2010. "I've been chosen for some reason to be bigger and larger than life in every way. Negative and positive."

McCready, who was born and raised in southern Florida, moved to Nashville when she was 18 to start her music career.

Within a few months, she was starting to work with producer David Malloy, who got her tapes to RLG Records. The company signed her to a contract after seeing her in concert, giving her a record deal less than a year after her arrival in Nashville.

Her debut album, Ten Thousand Angels, went gold within six months of its release in April 1996, and eventually went multi-platinum. Two more followed: If I Don't Stay the Night, in 1997; and I'm Not So Tough in 1999.

Her most recent album, I'm Still Here, featuring new versions of her early hits "Ten Thousand Angels" and "Guys Do It All the Time," was released in March 2010.


Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Mindy McCready: 'I Wanted to Stand Up and Fight'

ABC/Andrew Paparella(NEW YORK) -- Just one week ago, U.S. Marshals took away country singer Mindy McCready's 5-year-old son after she fled with him from Florida to Arkansas.  But now, McCready says things are finally going her way: She is pregnant with twins, in a committed relationship with the twins' father and believes she will get her son back.

"Everybody makes mistakes. I understand why I've made the bad choices I've made, and how not to make them in the future," she told ABC News' Andrea Canning in an exclusive interview.

In 1996, McCready was a rising star in the country music world, singing the number one hit, "Guys Do It All the Time," and selling millions of records.  But the years that followed saw the singer trapped in a downward spiral of substance abuse, arrests and reported domestic violence at the hands of her then-boyfriend and Zander's father, Billy McKnight.

McCready left McKnight, but not before the relationship, she said, took over, "every part of my brain and my heart."

"I was an idiot," she said.  "I was completely and totally love-struck and insane over that person and over what he was doing to me.  A person that hits you like that controls you, and he controlled every part of me. I stopped singing. I stopped socializing with my friends, with my brothers. I stopped living."

McKnight later pleaded guilty to domestic assault and served 30 days in prison.

McCready's mother, Gayle Inge, was given temporary custody of Zander in 2007 while McCready served six months in prison for a probation violation related to an earlier drug charge.  After leaving jail, she appeared on the reality show, Celebrity Rehab, which she said saved her life.

Her reason to live, she said, is Zander: "I couldn't imagine loving something so much that instead of wanting to just lay down and die, I wanted to stand up and fight."

That fight included trying to win back custody of Zander from Inge, whom McCready has accused of abuse.

Zander is now staying with a foster family in Arkansas, but there is a silver lining for McCready.  She said she was pleased with an Arkansas circuit court judge's custody ruling this week.  Details of the ruling have been sealed.

McCready believes she'll have Zander back in time for Christmas. In the meantime, she's writing new music inspired by her experiences.

Watch Canning's full interview with McCready Friday night at 10 p.m. ET on 20/20.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Mindy McCready: ‘What I Did Was to Protect My Child’

ABC/Andrew Paparella(NEW YORK) -- The FBI accused her of “parental abduction,” but country music star Mindy McCready told ABC News’ Andrea Canning in an exclusive interview that she believed she did nothing wrong in violating a court order and fleeing with her five-year-old son to Arkansas.

U.S. Marshals said they later found the country singer and the boy hiding in a closet, which McCready denies.

McCready said she would “not ever think that me taking my own child, that I carried for nine months, that I gave birth to in the hospital by myself would ever be breaking the law.”

“What I did was to protect my child, and there’s not a person in the world that’s going to tell me that that is wrong,” she said.

McCready, who is pregnant with twins, said her son was anguished when, she said, a U.S. Marshal came to get the boy with a SWAT team-like force last Friday.

“He was screaming, ‘Please don’t touch me, please don’t touch me, please don’t touch my mommy.  Please, leave me alone, I want to be with my mommy,’” McCready remembered.

An official with the U.S. Marshals said that authorities used standard operating procedure when taking Zander into custody and had a social worker with them.

“There was no forced entry made. No battering ram,” said David Rahbany, Chief Deputy U.S. Marshall for the Eastern District of Arkansas.

McCready’s mother, Gayle Inge, is Zander’s guardian. McCready has alleged that her son faced physical and emotional danger at Inge’s Florida home, a claim Inge has denied.  The two have been engaged in a custody battle over Zander for years.

McCready said she grew so desperate that, during a visit to the Cape Coral, Fla. home of her father -- Zander’s grandfather, who shares custody with the grandmother although they are divorced -- she took her son and left.

“I know there are rules that are written down that we’re supposed to follow, and guidelines that we’re supposed to follow, but there’s a difference between right and wrong, and right and wrong in my opinion should come first, always,” McCready said.

Inge was appointed Zander’s guardian in 2007 while McCready served six months in prison for a probation violation related to an earlier drug charge.

McCready said she was pleased with a juvenile court judge’s custody ruling this week.  Details of the ruling have been sealed.  Zander is currently in foster care.

Watch McCready's full interview with Canning Friday at 10 p.m. ET on 20/20.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Mindy McCready Due in Court After She and Son Found

Frederick Breedon/WireImage(CAPE CORAL, Fla.) -- Country singer Mindy McCready is due back in court Monday, after the singer and her five year-old son Zander were found hiding in the closet of an unoccupied summer home by Arkansas police. The discovery occurred days after the pair was first reported missing.

Police tracked down the singer at an unoccupied lake home in Heber Springs, Ark., according to the Cleburne County Sheriff.

Zander has been in foster care in Arkansas since Friday night when he was taken from McCready and into custody. At a hearing Monday, an Arkansas judge will confer with Florida Department of Children and Families officials about sending the boy back to the Cape Coral, Fla., home of McCready's mother Gayle Inge, who is Zander's legal guardian.

Authorities said her boyfriend David Wilson was talking to police while the multi-platinum-selling recording artist was hiding in a closet with her son. Neither McCready nor Wilson had permission to be in the home.  There was no struggle, but they said McCready was quite emotional.

Child welfare officials said Zander is safe and in good health.

It's uncertain whether the singer will face criminal charges. She was not arrested but could be charged with criminal trespassing, though Sheriff Marty Moss told ABC News that was unlikely. McCready could also face third degree felony charges in Florida for violating a court order and taking her son across state lines, but again it's not clear whether Florida officials will prosecute.

McCready is no stranger to making headlines for the wrong reasons. The singer has been busted on drug and DUI charges, spent time in jail for assaulting her mother, been hospitalized several times for suicide attempts, and claimed to have an affair with baseball star Roger Clemens.

Her latest troubles, absconding with her five-year-old son Zander in violation of a judge's order, could see her once again behind bars -- only this time she's pregnant with twins. McCready spokeswoman Kat Atwood told ABC News that the singer is entering her six month of pregnancy.  The babies' father is believed to be Wilson, McCready's music producer boyfriend, according to the New York Daily News.

McCready, 36, went public with her pregnancy last week, saying she could not travel back to Lee County, Fla., where a judge had ordered the return of her son. McCready claimed that Zander was in danger while living in the Cape Coral, Fla., home of her mother.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Mindy McCready and Son Found by Police in Arkansas

Frederick Breedon/WireImage(HEBER SPRINGS, Ark.) -- Police tracked down country singer Mindy McCready and her 5-year-old son overnight Friday after she defied a court order to return him to his grandmother.

Around 8 p.m. Friday, police took her son, Zander, from his mother at a lake home owned by McCready's boyfriend in Heber Springs, Ark., according to the Cleburne County Sheriff.

Zander is on his way to his legal guardian, his grandmother, in Florida, according to reports.

Authorities said the boyfriend was talking to police while the multi-platinum selling recording artist was hiding in a closet with her son.

There was no struggle, but they said McCready was quite emotional.

Child welfare officials said Zander is safe and in good health.

He never really was in any danger, but the FBI circulated flyers, called it a "parental abduction" and declared Zander "missing," last seen in a Ford Explorer outside the home of McCready's father.

It appeared that Florida officials may have known McCready's location all along, because police arrived at the home with a signed warrant from an Arkansas court.

After the singer's many troubles, including a stint on celebrity rehab for a serious drug problem, the court gave custody of her son to McCready's mother.

On Friday night, Gayle Inge, Zander's grandmother and McCready's mother broke into tears over the situation.

"I can't even explain it, I just can't explain it," Inge said.

McCready has spent the past few years turning her life around, and she's been fighting for custody of her son.

"The focus in custody cases is what's in the best interest of the child. If she wants to go to court, and she wants to say, you know what, I'd like this court order lifted and I wanna change the nature of this custody arrangement, great, go do that. But you can't just go in there, grab the child and evade authorities," said ABC News legal analyst Dan Abrams.

The court had ordered her to return the boy Thursday evening, but through her representatives, she told authorities she's seven months pregnant with twins and in no condition to travel.

The babies' father is believed to be McCready's music producer boyfriend David Wilson, according to the New York Daily News.

So far, no criminal charges have been filed against McCready for taking her son from his legal guardian.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Mindy McCready Ready to 'Go to Jail' for Son

Frederick Breedon/WireImage(CAPE CORAL, Fla.) -- Mindy McCready now faces serious legal trouble after missing a judge's deadline to return her 5-year-old son Zander to Florida, but the troubled country singer has given no indication if or when she plans to bring him home.

Authorities are now calling this case a parental abduction. The FBI has released a missing person poster and Lee County, Fla., family court judge James Seals has signed a new order, telling law enforcement nationwide to take Zander into custody upon sight.

McCready responded by saying she's willing to risk jail to protect her son.

The Florida Department of Children and Families told ABC News, "Once the child is located, we will pick him up and bring him back to Florida. His safety and well-being are our number one priority."

The boy's father and McCready's ex-boyfriend Billy McKnight told NBC Friday that he spoke on the phone with the singer and their boy after the judge's deadline expired.

"He did sound healthy and ok. He wasn't crying or scared," McKnight said about Zander.

"I think she believes she has a case and doesn't realize she's pushing her luck on this one," he added.

McCready has been involved in a messy custody battle over the boy with her mother, Gayle Inge, and her ex. Zander lives in Cape Coral, Fla., with his grandmother, who has legal custody of him. He is allowed to stay with his father on occasion, but can only see McCready on supervised visits.

"Zander is used to being in Florida with me and her mother. I'm worried about him being moved around," McKnight told HLN Thursday.

At some point during a visit on Tuesday, McCready took Zander and fled to Nashville.

Seals ordered McCready to return to Lee County, Fla., by 5 p.m. Thursday, but the singer has now made it clear that she has no intention of doing that.

McCready could face felony charges for violating the court order and taking her son out of state, but right now authorities tell ABC News that they are focused on finding Zander.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio



Singer Mindy McCready and Son Missing

Frederick Breedon/WireImage(CAPE CORAL, Fla.) -- Police are asking country singer Mindy McCready to return to Lee County, Fla., with her five-year-old son Xander.

McCready’s parents told local news station WINK that the troubled singer took the boy from their Cape Coral, Fla., home several days ago and has not returned. Her parents have custody of Xander after a years-long court battle between McCready and the boy’s father Bill McKnight.

In an emergency hearing called by the Department of Children and Families Tuesday afternoon, a family court judge gave McCready until 5 p.m. Thursday to return the boy or she’ll be subject to arrest, a spokesman for the Cape Coral Police Department told ABC News.

“If she doesn’t come back by Thursday at 5, she will be in violation of his order,” he said.

Police do not consider the case an abduction at this point. The spokesman said McCready’s parents have been in contact with her.

McCready, who scored a number-one Billboard country hit in 1996 with “Guys Do It All the Time,” has been arrested multiple times on drug charges and probation violations and has been hospitalized for overdoses several times in recent years.  In 2010, the singer appeared on VH1′s Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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