Country Superstar Kitty Wells Dies at 92

by Raphael Chestang 4:50 PM PDT, July 16, 2012
Photo: Getty Images

Country music's first female superstar, Kitty Wells, died on Monday at the age of 92.

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According to The Associated Press, the singer's passing followed complications from a stroke. The family tells the news source that Wells died peacefully at her home.

The Nashville native, born Ellen Muriel Deason, reportedly began playing the guitar at 14, and she still performed in concert tours up until the year 2000.

Of her 25 Top 10 country hits, she might be best remembered for the tunes Making Believe and It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels. The latter marked the first No. 1 hit by a woman soloist in country music.

Wells has been an inductee of the Country Music Hall of Fame since 1976 and received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences in 1991.

According to the New York Times, Wells lived to see her five great-great-grandchildren, whom she is survived by along with a son, a daughter, eight grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren. Her husband, Johnny Wright, died September 27 of last year.