Craig Strickland was fondly remembered as a loving, deeply religious husband during his emotional funeral service.
Joined by the Backroad Anthem singer's family, band, and loved ones at Cross Church in Rogers, Arkansas on Tuesday night, Craig's wife Helen celebrated the singer's life with memories and music, after he and his friend, Chase Morland, died during a duck hunting trip in Oklahoma.
During the service, Craig's family and loved ones -- including his father, mother and sister -- shared recorded memories of the man they knew and loved during his 29 years of life.
During her portion, Helen acknowledged she was "just getting started on [her] path with grief."
"For Craig's and my first date, he took me to Mt. Sequoia, that lookout point," she revealed, admitting, "for a girl, that made me a little nervous at first."
"He turned and looked at me and said, 'I've come to realize that relationships are the only thing that we take with us to Heaven."
Helen then turned the memorial outward, saying, "Even now God is showing us the good that can come from any tragedy.
"I love you Craig Michael Strickland," she concluded. "And I love each of you, as he did."
Craig’s father also shared a fond memory of one of his son’s musical accomplishments.
"When the band opened for Lynyrd Skynyrd, Craig said 'Dad, take the day off,'" Criag's father revealed, saying, "I'm so, so proud of my son."
"God had a plan for Craig, as he does everyone," said his mother. "I'm so honored that God chose me to be Craig's mother."
"I love you, and I cannot wait to see you," she added, as a message to her son.
"This is a situation I never thought I'd be in. Talking about the life of my brother in the past tense," Craig's sister admitted. "Craig loved everyone he met, but there was no one he loved and adored more than Helen."
After the service, Helen exited the funeral before the rest of the guests were dismissed, and it was asked that everyone respected her privacy during this difficult time.
Earlier on Tuesday, the former Miss Arkansas shared a letter to her late husband on Instagram, writing, “Today I buried my husband. This is a picture of the letter I put in his jacket pocket."
Today I buried my husband. This is a picture of the letter I put in his jacket pocket. I love him with every part of my heart, but I love our God more...and I know my God loves Craig and I more than we could ever imagine. Therefore, God has a purpose. He makes everything beautiful in its time. Craig established relationships with each of us so that he could see us again. So let us love one another like Craig did. Let us pray for strangers. And let us establish relationships with one another with the goal of establishing Christ-like relationships so that we can see each other again in heaven. ❤️ "For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven. A time to be born and a time to die. A time to plant and a time to harvest... A time to cry and a time to laugh. A time to grieve and a time to dance... A time to search and a time to quit searching." Ecclesiastes 3:1-2, 4, 6
On Jan. 4, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol Marine Enforcement Division recovered Craig’s body in an area referred to as Bear Creek Cove. The 29-year-old singer and his 22-year-old friend, Morland, 22, were first reported missing following a duck hunting trip during a storm. Chase’s body was found on Dec. 28.
Watch the video below for Helen's remembrance of her final moment with Craig.