Inside Loretta Lynn's 'Up and Down' 48-Year Marriage to Oliver 'Doo' Lynn: 'He Meant Everything to Me'

Loretta Lynn's decades-long marriage to husband Oliver "Doolittle" Lynn was the stuff of country legend, in both good times and in bad.

Lynn, who died on Tuesday at age 90, married the man she called "Doo" at age 15. By the time she was 20, she had given birth to four of their six children.

Their enduring union, which lasted for 48 years until Doo's death in 1996, weathered all sorts of storms, including his cheating and drinking — much of which was chronicled in her honky-tonk hits, including "Don't Come Home A' Drinkin' (With Lovin' on Your Mind)," "You Ain't Woman Enough (To Take My Man)" and "Fist City."

"[We had] lots of ups and downs," Lynn told PEOPLE in 2010, but as she once famously said, "He never hit me one time that I didn't hit him back twice."

Lynn was a teenaged coal miner's daughter when she met her future husband — a moonshine runner six years her senior — at a pie social.

Loretta Lynn and husband Oliver Mooney Lynn. Oliver Mooney Jr.
Loretta Lynn and husband Oliver Mooney Lynn. Oliver Mooney Jr.

DMI/The LIFE Picture Collection/Shutterstock "Doo" Lynn and Loretta Lynn

"Sometimes my husband tells me, 'I raised you the way I wanted you to be.' And it's true," Lynn wrote in her 1976 memoir Coal Miner's Daughter. "I went from Daddy to Doo, and there's always been a man telling me what to do."

Still, she has credited her late husband with kick-starting her career; it was he who bought Lynn her first guitar, and Doo who helped spread her music to local radio stations. He even served as her talent manager for many years.

For more on Loretta Lynn, listen below to our daily podcast PEOPLE Every Day.

"If it wasn't for Doolittle, there would be no career," Lynn wrote in Coal Miner's Daughter. "I wouldn't have started singing in the first place, and I wouldn't have had the inspiration for some of my best songs, in the second place. And I never could have run my business. So in a real sense, Doolittle is responsible for everything we got."

RELATED: Country Stars Mourn the Loss of 'Icon' Loretta Lynn: 'One of the Greatest There Ever Will Be'

Loretta Lynn and husband Oliver Mooney' Lynn, Jr.
Loretta Lynn and husband Oliver Mooney' Lynn, Jr.

Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images "Doo" Lynn and Loretta Lynn

Though Doo's indiscretions provided inspiration for many of Lynn's lyrics, the country singer told Entertainment Weekly in 2004 that she "didn't understand" why her feminist songs were being championed.

"They'd say, 'You're the first woman to do this'... I might have been. But I had to do it," she said. "Doolittle believed in me, and I'd have made him proud of me or [I would have] died."

RELATED GALLERY: Remembering Loretta Lynn's One-of-a-Kind Life in Photos

Lynn also said that although Doo wasn't exactly portrayed in the best of lights in some of her songs, he didn't mind at all.

"He'd take the money the songs would make and run all the way to the bank, so he was happy!" she told PEOPLE in 2016. "[Despite] little fights, he meant everything to me. Still does."

When their tumultuous love story hit the silver screen in the 1980 film Coal Miner's Daughter, Tommy Lee Jones played Doo while Sissy Spacek took on the role of Lynn.

Loretta Lynn and husband Oliver Mooney Lynn, Jr. during 53rd Annual Academy Awards' Governor's Ball at Beverly Hilton Hotel
Loretta Lynn and husband Oliver Mooney Lynn, Jr. during 53rd Annual Academy Awards' Governor's Ball at Beverly Hilton Hotel

MediaPunch Inc / Alamy Stock Photo "Doo" Lynn and Loretta Lynn in 1981

She described their marriage as such in her memoir: "In most ways, Doo has been a good husband. He's worked hard all his life to get things for me and the kids. I don't want to say he's never fooled around, or gotten drunk, or whipped me into line a little, because that ain't the truth. There were plenty of bad moments in our marriage, but I've always respected my husband's common sense… I feel safe when he's around."

In real life, the pair shared six children: Betty Sue, who died in 2013, Jack Benny, who died in 1984, Cissy, 70, Ernest Ray, 68, and twins Peggy and Patsy, 58.

Doo died in 1996 at age 69 of complications from diabetes and heart failure.

This past January, the singer paid tribute to her late husband on their anniversary with a sweet post on Instagram.

"74 years ago, my life changed forever when I married Doolittle," she wrote. "We had 48 years together and I sure wish he was still here! I miss him."