What We Know About Where Loretta Lynn's Fortune Went After She Died

Just before the iconic country singer Loretta Lynn died, she spoke to her daughter, Peggy Lynn. "Honey, your daddy's here and I'm going to heaven, he told me he's taking me by the hand and he's taking me to heaven tonight," she told Peggy (via WYMT). Lynn died peacefully in her sleep on October 4, 2022, at her estate in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee, per the Associated Press.

In her 90 years, Lynn put out a string of hit records — her most famous song being "Coal Miner's Daughter" — and a fortune of $65 million, per CelebrityNetWorth. She also amassed a brood of children and grandchildren. By the time she began her recording career in the early 1960s she already had four children and later had twin girls, Peggy and Patsy Lynn. According to the tabloid Radar Online, an unnamed family friend said that before she died, the country legend planned her own funeral and began converting as much of her estate into cash as possible for her children and grandchildren.

From poverty to multi-millionaire

Born Loretta Webb into poverty in Butcher Hollow, Kentucky in 1932, Loretta Lynn grew up in a one-room shack without running water with her seven siblings, according to CNN. She married Oliver Lynn at age 15. Her music career began modestly, but by 1966 she'd become the first woman to pen a No. 1 country song. She would eventually sell more than 45 million records worldwide, per Southern Living. The same year, she purchased a huge estate in Tennessee that she eventually opened as a popular camping site and museum, per Tennessee River Valley. The hugely popular 1980 biopic "Coal Miner's Daughter" and promotional deals also brought in money. Billboard estimates Lynn earned about $341,000 in 2021 from her songwriting royalties alone.

Even in her final days, Lynn kept working, working on songs and writing a devotional book — "A Song and a Prayer" — that came out after her death, per Today. "She just always had so many irons in the fire," her daughter Peggy told the outlet in May 2023. Lynn also spent her final months planning her funeral and estate. "Loretta wants to turn most of her physical holdings into cash so she doesn't burden her kids and grandkids with having to sell off stuff when she's gone," the unnamed family friend told Radar Online just days before her death.

Loretta Lynn's family

On October 7, 2022, Loretta Lynn's family buried her on her nearly 3,500-acre Tennessee ranch next to her husband of nearly 50 years, Oliver "Doo" Lynn, who died in 1996, per Taste of Country. Two of her children — Jack, who drowned in 1984, and Betty Sue, who died in 2013 — are also buried nearby. Lynn's surviving children include Clara "Cissie," who is a musician; Ernest Ray, who works at the family's ranch; and twins Peggy and Patsy, who also had singing careers, per People. Lynn also had 17 grandchildren and four step-grandchildren.

Although there is no public information available as to what happened to the bulk of Loretta Lynn's fortune, her children and grandchildren were the most likely beneficiaries. At least one of her properties went to her daughter Patsy. According to The Tennessean, the musician transferred her Nashville home, worth an estimated $1 million, to her daughter six months before her death. In August 2023, Lynn's family brought on Sandbox Succession to manage their mother's estate, per Variety. The firm also handles the estates of such legends as Johnny and June Carter Cash and takes care of everything from TV and movie deals to merchandising, which should continue to pay dividends for Lynn's heirs well into the future.