Two-and-a-half years later, Jennifer Hudson is speaking out to Oprah Winfrey about the tragic deaths of her mother, brother and nephew that occurred in 2008. Jennifer says tearfully, “It’s such a shocking thing and it’s a lot to take in.”
Jennifer sat down with Oprah today to discuss her dramatic weight loss, reveal her new single from her upcoming album, I Remember Me, and also speak out on the tragedy that struck her family in 2008.
“It’s like, okay, is this real? Did this really happen?” Jennifer tells Oprah of her reaction to the deaths. “It’s hard to put it in sync with reality.”
Jennifer mother, Darnell Donerson, and her brother, Jason Hudson, were found dead on Oct. 24, 2008, inside their home they shared with Jennifer sister, Julia Hudson, in Chicago, ABC News reports.
Three days later, Julia’s 7-year-old son, Julian King, was found dead in the back of Jason’s SUV. All three victims suffered multiple gunshot wounds.
Since then, the estranged husband of Julia, William Balfour, has been arrested and charged with the killings.
Jennifer and her fiancè welcomed their son, David, in August 2009 and his birth has helped Jennifer cope.
“It’s a very emotional subject,” she explained. “[I got through it because] of my family, my baby and God.”
“I keep holding on to things that they taught us,” Jennifer said of her family. “My mother and even my brother — I can hear him saying to me, ‘Just knock it off.’”
And it’s her mother’s words that she’s really trying to listen.
“My mother right now would say to me, ‘Why are you always crying? Stop crying,’” Jennifer told Oprah. “You’ve got to keep going.
“The only thing I can do to honor their memory is to make them proud,” she added. “I keep thinking, ‘Would my mother like this or that, would she want this?’”