- In October 2008, Jennifer’s mother Darnell Donnerson, brother and nephew were murdered by her sister’s estranged husband
- During the trial, the Oscar-winner testified and even went to court every day, which she said was ‘the toughest thing ever’
- In 2012, William Balfour was convicted on all seven counts against him and was sentenced to three life sentences without the possibility of parole
In 2008 she experienced a family tragedy when her mother Darnell Donnerson, brother and nephew were all murdered by her sister’s estranged husband.
And Jennifer Hudson has since tried to cope with that loss by trying to keep the lines of communication open with her loved ones gone too soon.
The 34-year-old singer revealed in an interview with CBS News that she regularly has conversations with her deceased mother.
Opening up: Jennifer Hudson – pictured at the Glamour’s 25th Anniversary Women Of The Year Awards in New York on Monday – discussed the tragic family triple murder back in 2008 in a recent interview with CBS News
Sparkle in sequins with Jennifer’s Marchesa gown
Well it wouldn’t be the Glamour Awards without some serious glamour on the red carpet would it? The celebs were out in force for the Glamour Women of the Year Awards last night and stepping up their red carpet game with a number of show stopping ensembles. One such showstopper was Jennifer Hudson who looked unbelievable in this couture Marchesa gown.
With a 1920’s influence and a touch of Gatsby glam, this all over embellished fishtail maxi hugged Jennifer’s curves and flattered her figure perfectly. We adore that sexy neckline and the small subtle train to the back. What girl wouldn’t feel glamorous in a sparkly number like this one. From the SS15 couture collection at Marchesa, this dress of course isn’t available to buy off the shelf but if you do want a piece of the designer and are prepared to flash some cash then click to the right to shop some equally show stopping Marchesa dresses at Net-a-Porter.
To channel Jennifer’s sparkle at a more affordable price, shop our top sequin dress picks below with styles from Forever Unique, Asos and more
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Gone too soon: The 34-year-old singer – pictured with mother Darnell Donnerson in New York in 2008 – answered ‘all the time’ when reporter Anthony Mason asked: ‘Do you still have conversations with your Mom in your head?’
The admission came as the Oscar-winner was queried by reporter Anthony Mason: ‘Do you still have conversations with your Mom in your head?’
‘All the time,’ Jennifer responded. ‘And my brother, if he was here, if I was sitting up crying, he’ll say, “Jenny, knock it off. Knock it off!”‘
Darnell, Jennifer’s 29-year-old brother Jason and seven-year-old nephew, Julian King, were all shot dead by her sister’s estranged husband in Chicago back in October 2008.
Tragedy: Hudson’s mother Darnell and brother Jason were found shot dead in their Chicago home in October 2008, and her nephew Julian was found dead days later (clockwise from top: Hudson, Donnerson, Julian and her sister Julia in 2007)
In May 2012, William Balfour was convicted on all seven counts against him in the trial and was ultimately sentenced to three life sentences without the possibility of parole.
Jennifer testified and even went to court every day, which she said was ‘the toughest thing ever’ in the recent CBS interview, but moved forward with the process as she had extra motivation.
‘I remember God came to me, like, right when everything happened, ’cause I was like, “What do I do?! And He said, “I want you to get up and keep going,”‘ she explained. ‘And you don’t question God. I said, “Okay, let’s go.”‘
Saving grace: Jennifer has been engaged to professional wrestler and Harvard Law Graduate, David Otunga, since September 2007
She has previously credited her professional wrestler and fiancé David Otunga and their six-year-old son, David Jr, with helping her get through that rough time in her life.
Things seem to be going swimmingly for the star as the Where You At hitmaker will be making her Broadway debut in The Color Purple.
As her last on-stage role was on a Disney cruise ship over a decade ago, Jennifer certainly seems thrilled about the opportunity as she said: ‘You know, It’s so exciting, I wanna sing in here right now!’
With the show being in the Big Apple, it reminds her of the first time she hit the spotlight on reality singing competition programme American Idol back in 2004.
Her little man: Jennifer is mother to six-year-old son David Jr, who she credits with getting her through that very rough period of her life
‘My first trip to New York was when I was coming to do the news for being eliminated from American Idol,’ Jennifer explained. ‘And then to fast-forward all the way to here now, it’s like full circle in so many different ways.’
She ultimately finished seventh on the show an as she was criticised for her wardrobe, but she did not take the critiques completely to heart
Jennifer told the interviewer Mason: ‘It gives you a tough skin. So I kept going with it. It’s like, well, they can tell me I can’t sing on the show, but you can’t tell me I can’t sing.’
The Color Purple began previews in the past week with a full opening on Broadway next month on November 16.
Coming soon: The Oscar-winning actress will soon be making her Broadway debut in The Color Purple
Practise makes perfect The Color Purple began previews in the past week with a full opening on Broadway next month on November 16