2020 has been a difficult year by virtually any standard, and it's been especially punishing in country music. The genre has endured heartbreak after heartbreak in 2020 — the year has already claimed the lives of a number of country icons, as well as rising stars.

The first half of 2020 has seen the country world lose some of the most important artists in the genre, both due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and outside of it. Kenny Rogers, John Prine and multi-genre pioneer Little Richard are among the true legends we've lost so far in 2020, and fans have also said goodbye to members of some of the all-time most successful country groups, including Willie Nelson's Family Band, the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, the Oak Ridge Boys and the Statler Brothers.

Several country singers have also lost family members in the first half of 2020, including a country music legend whose iconic family has seen tragedy again and again. Nashville's music scene has lost some key behind-the-scenes players this year, including several prominent songwriters and well-known sidemen for popular artists.

Scroll through the pictures below to see everyone the country genre has lost so far in 2020.