Hayden Panettiere Admits It’s Hard for Her to Talk About Connie Britton’s ‘Nashville’ Exit

As a mother herself, Hayden Panettiere found it hard to handle when Connie Britton surprisingly exited Nashville through the tragic loss of Rayna James.

After facing an intense confrontation with a stalker and suffering from critical injuries following a horrific car crash, James passed away suddenly due to complications from a surgery and breakdown of her organs. Panettiere told the ladies of the daytime talk show, The Talk, how much of an impact Rayna had on her own character, Juliette Barnes, as well as the emotional toll it took thinking about her own daughter.

“It was that moment where finally the truth came out – how much I respected her and how much I looked up to her. And, oh my gosh that day… it’s hard for me to even talk about it and that was also the day that she’s lying in the hospital bed and her daughters are singing this song to her and as a mother the idea of seeing two little girls lose their mom, it’s hard for me to talk about,” Panettiere admitted.

Panettiere’s character has been experiencing some rough life changes as well, from almost dying in a fiery plane crash to making a slow, steady recovery through rehab in order to gain the strength to walk again. Throughout her developments though, Juliette Barnes found faith within a gospel church and set plans to release an album in that genre for her next project.

Fans can tune into Nashville on Thursday nights at 9 p.m. ET on CMT.