Country singer Allison Moorer lost her mother and father in a murder-suicide at the hands of her father when she just 14. More than three decades later, she’s somehow able to forgive him.
“I needed to do it so that I could be happy,” Moorer told CBS This Morning.
But it’s been difficult for Moorer, who was living with her mother and older sister, singer Shelby Lynne (then 17), when the tragedy occurred in 1986. Their mother, Lynn, had finally left their abusive, alcoholic father, Franklin, and they were living in a rental home. On the morning of Aug. 12, he visited the house, and the girls heard shots.
“I think he just broke,” Moorer said.
She’s written about the life-changing event and the aftermath in a new memoir, Blood, and a companion album of the same title. Now 47, Moorer said she was compelled to go back and research her family, so that she could figure out the reason behind what she went through.
“I’m still trying not to be the daughter of a murderer,” she wrote in her book. “I’m still trying not to be the daughter of an abused and murdered woman. I’m still trying to redeem them.”
Moorer, who was nominated for an Oscar for a song in the 1998 movie “The Horse Whisperer,” has placed keepsakes from her parents throughout her home in Nashville.
“My mama was a great mama. And she is why I’m okay. She is why my sister is okay,” Moorer said.
Moorer acknowledged that she and her sister Shelby have always been especially close. For a time, they were all either of them had.
“She never ever let me believe that I was not loved,” Moorer said of her mother Lynn.
While Moorer also feels “nothing but love” for her father today, it took a few things to get to that point.
“Time. Investigation. Willingness, and having a little boy,” she said.
Moorer is already thinking about how she’ll one day explain the family’s complicated history to her son, John Henry, who has autism.
She’ll tell him “that his grandparents were troubled and beautiful, like we all are.”
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