HUMPHREYS COUNTY, TN (WSMV) - One of country music's biggest icons is mourning the loss of someone she considered family.

Loretta Lynn's ranch foreman Wayne Spears died after he was swept away by floodwaters over the weekend.

While Lynn honors her ranch foreman, who died, she also wants to focus on how she can help those impacted by the flooding.

How to help Humphreys County flood victims

News4 spoke with Lynn's granddaughter, Tayla, about Spears, who was known as the 'heartbeat of the ranch.'

"I never not remember Wayne being there," Tayla Lynn said.

She never imagined catastrophic flooding would hit on Saturday. The night before, she was with her family in downtown Waverly.

"It was just like a fun Friday night. People were out, popcorn. We were eating hot dogs," Lynn said.

The next morning, Tayla and her family pulled up to the ranch. She remembers the water being a little too high. That's when they went to higher ground.

"The water rushed in. You start seeing semis float, all the ice machines, and all the water is coming up. I mean, 12 feet of water in front of us for sure," Lynn said.

At one point, another ranch worker told her they were looking for Wayne. Tayla said Wayne was on a tractor near the motocross track, and it tipped over. Tayla's husband jumped in to help find Wayne.

"That was devastating then it was kind of scramble mode at that time. All hands-on deck," Jon Fingert, Tayla Lynn's husband, said.

That morning, Fingert used a drone to figure out the gravity of the situation. It's that same technology that guided him to Wayne.

"He was such a wonderful man to this family and this community, and it broke my heart. All I could do was sit there and pray for him and say my goodbyes," Fingert said.

"So many people have not been found in this town. So many missing and I think just for me, I was so glad that Louise, his wife, and that his children would know," Lynn said.

For Loretta and the entire Lynn family, they will never forget Wayne's infectious smile, kind heart, and incredible work ethic.

"She wants to honor someone that gave literally his life for that ranch," Lynn said.

Wayne's funeral is set for Wednesday. The Lynn family plans to celebrate his life sometime soon.

As of Tuesday morning, 22 people are confirmed dead with 12 still unaccounted for. is now with you on the go! Get the latest news updates and video, 4WARN weather forecast, weather radar, special investigative reports, sports headlines and much more from News4 Nashville.

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