Founding Dixie Chicks member Laura Lynch dies in Texas car crash

Laura Lynch, a founding member of the Dixie Chicks — now known as The Chicks — died Friday in a car crash in El Paso, Texas, the Texas Department of Public Safety confirmed to NPR and multiple outlets. She was 65 years old. 

The details of the crash were not immediately known. 

According to the band’s biography on Country Music television, Lynch founded the band alongside three other women in 1989, including sisters Martie Maguire and Emily Strayer. The original group recorded three albums together before she left and was replaced by Natalie Maines, creating the current trio. 

The band, which dropped the controversial term “dixie” from its name in 2020 as the U.S. reckoned with its history of racial injustice following the killing of George Floyd, posted a statement to social media following the news of Lynch’s death. 

“Laura was a bright light. Her infectious energy and humor gave a spark to the early days of our band,” it said, “Our thoughts are with her family and loved ones at this sad time.”