As she contemplated her upcoming performance at the 94th Academy Awards ceremony on Sunday (March 27), Reba McEntire wasn’t feeling all that excited, and she didn’t know why. Then, just days before the ceremony, she had a realization.
“I was very emotional yesterday about the Oscars,” McEntire told Taste of Country and other outlets on Thursday afternoon (March 24), “Because I said yes to the Oscars in ’91, and then the plane crash happened.”
On March 25, 1991, McEntire took the stage to sing the Best Original Song-nominated “I’m Checkin’ Out,” from the film Postcards From the Edge. It was a difficult performance: Just days earlier, on March 16, seven band members and McEntire’s road manager died in a plane crash following a show they’d played in San Diego. In the wake of the tragedy, she’d contemplated not keeping her Oscars engagement.
“And then I went and sang the song, because I felt [road manager] Jim Hammond talking to me, saying ‘Go do it for us. We’re checked out of this heartbreak hotel.'”