Servicing the ‘Coal Miner’s Daughter’

Jan 10, 2023

For 18 months, Lindsey Barker knew the minute the call or text came in, she would have to respond immediately.

On the morning of Oct. 4, she got the text informing her that Loretta Lynn, the queen of country music, had died at 90.

“About a year-and-a-half prior to her passing, I was contacted by Loretta Lynn’s family to handle her preneed,” said Barker, manager, funeral director and embalmer of the Luff-Bowen Funeral Home in Waverly, Tennessee. “Our funeral home had serviced her family members before including her husband, Oliver “Mooney” Lynn (who died in 1996); her daughter, Betty Sue Lynn (2013) and her son, Jack Benny Lynn (1984).

The text came from Tim Cobb, who designed many of Lynn’s signature dresses and was her personal assistant for more than 30 years. “The text said, ‘She’s gone, come get her,’” Barker said.

“Tim had told me that he had been with Loretta all these years and he wanted to make sure she was protected,” she added. “He told me ‘I need to know you will be on board with this. When it happens, we need to be so very private. We don’t need anyone up here at her house when you are doing the removal.’”

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