Ten Thousand Angels become Demons: R.I.P. Mindy McCready

Country singer, Mindy McCready, died of a single self-inflicted gunshot wound on Sunday February 17 in Heber Springs, Arkansas. She was 37 years of age. Mindy had gone to Nashville in 1994 and at the age of 18 gained a recording contract with BNA records. Two years later she had her first No. 1 hit "Guys Do It All the Time." This was followed in 1996 by "Ten Thousand Angels," and an album selling some 2 million copies with the song as the title. She went on to perform with country stars such as George Strait, Tim McGraw and Alan Jackson.

While she did go on to record four more albums those were not nearly as successful. The demons began to circle. Between 2004 and just prior to her death she had problems and entered into treatment for various drug and alcohol problems. In 2004 she had an overdose and was also arrested for engaging in fraud to obtain Oxycontin from a pharmacy. She pled guilty and began three years’ probation. In 2005 she was arrested for drunken driving and later, in September, overdosed. In June 2008 it was determined that she had falsified community service records and violated the terms of her 2004 probation. She was ordered to undergo undisclosed treatment at an extended care facility and then served a 60-day jail sentence. In May 2010 she was treated for an overdose sometime following her appearing on the series hosted by Dr. Drew Pinsky, “Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew” (several other celebrities have died from drugs who appeared on the show).

But the end appears to have finally arrived with the death of boyfriend David Wilson (and father of her latest child Zayne) by the same means and on the same porch where she died. According to a report by Fox News on February 8, 2013, McCready’s “father has had her committed to a treatment facility, and she is being ordered to stay there for at least three weeks” for substance abuse and not caring for her children (Zander, age 6, and Zayne, 10 months). The judge wrote: "There is cause to find there is clear and convincing evidence that Respondent is in imminent danger of harm to herself or others, suicidal or gravely disabled."

Mindy McCready’s talent and determination to excel as a country singer took her a long ways in her first two years in her chosen field. But the trials in her personal life and the opportunities to “try some of this it will really help” soon began to take control. If she had stayed in the treatment program perhaps she could return to that field. She could have at least been able to return to caring for and raising her two young children. Or worked out some way to do so with her family.


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