Losing a family member is incredibly traumatic, and on Monday, Blake Shelton shared his heartbreaking story of losing his older brother, Richie, who was killed in a car accident at age 24, when Shelton was 14.
As someone who is incredibly close with their sibling, I can't imagine that kind of pain, but Shelton is brave to open up about that singular kind of grief. Billboard notes that Shelton credits his brother with helping to spark his love of music; he inherited Richie's vinyl record collection upon his death. "That's one of the things I got when my brother was killed. The family gave me all his albums and things like that. I just listened to them over and over again to feel like he was there," he said to the Associated Press. Richie was a fan of 70s country rock music, and Shelton later says that "...he was listening to Hank Williams, Jr. or Waylon, Lynyrd Skynyrd or Bob Seeger."
Shelton also still feels grief about his brother's death. In 2014, he spoke with 60 Minutes and said that his father told him he'd feel the pain forever. "He said, 'Look, you will never, ever get over this happening. You're just going to have to learn to get used to it.' He was absolutely right," said Shelton.
Lost my brother 27 years ago today. I was only 14 at the time but it changed my life forever... Made me realize that life is precious and there's no time like RIGHT NOW to go for it... We still miss you Richie!!— Blake Shelton (@blakeshelton) November 13, 2017
Read These Stories Next: