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Loretta Lynn Inducts Sister Crystal Gayle Into the Grand Ole Opry

In 1962, Loretta Lynn became a member of the Grand Ole Opry, and 55 years later, on Saturday night (Jan. 21), the country icon was on hand to help induct her sister, Crystal Gayle, into the hallowed institution.

“We’ve been together a long time, honey. And we’ve never had a fight,” Lynn said onstage during Gayle’s induction. “It was the greatest moment of my life when they made me a member of the Grand Ole Opry in 1962. I know she is just as happy as I was then.”

Gayle made her Grand Ole Opry debut 50 years ago, on the Ryman Auditorium stage, when she was just 16 years old; she performed Marty Robbins‘ “Ribbon of Darkness” and, she recalls, “was probably wringing my hands … and wore a little shiny dress my mother made me” (quote via the Tennessean).

“Being a member of the Opry is just incredible,” Gayle said on Saturday night. “It’s really hard to comprehend. I have felt like a part of the Opry for all these years. Now, I’m official.”

Carrie Underwood invited Gayle to join the Grand Ole Opry in mid-November, during a weeknight Opry at the Ryman performance. Together, the two performed Gayle’s “Don’t It Make My Brown Eyes Blue” — and then, Underwood popped the question.

“For more than half of the Opry’s 91 years, Crystal Gayle has been lending her signature vocals to Opry shows and connecting with Opry audiences as well as with everyone backstage,” Opry Vice President and General Manager Pete Fisher said at that time. “She is family.”

The Grand Ole Opry Through the Years

NEXT: Is Traditional Country Music Dead?

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