(UPDATE: 10/12/2022 at 12:30 p.m. ET): The official American Idol Instagram account launched a press release about Willie’s loss of life at 12:00 p.m. ET on Oct. 12. “We’re devastated in regards to the passing of our beloved American Idol member of the family, Willie Spence,” the publish learn. “He was a real expertise who lit up each room he entered and can be deeply missed. We ship our condolences to his family members.”
(ORIGINAL STORY) The American Idol household has misplaced a beloved former contestant. Willie Spence is lifeless after succumbing to accidents in a tragic Oct. 11 automotive accident. The singer’s native newspaper, Douglas Now, was first to report the information on Fb. “DouglasNow has realized that Douglas native and American Idol season 19 runner-up Willie Spence, 23, has handed away attributable to accidents sustained in an vehicle accident in Tennessee,” the outlet wrote. “We’ve got no additional particulars at the moment. We lengthen our condolences to Willie’s household, mates and followers. He was a rare expertise and a ray of sunshine to thousands and thousands internationally. He can be missed.”
The data was additionally seemingly confirmed by Katharine McPhee, who carried out with Willie throughout his time on Idol. She took to her Instagram Story to share that she “obtained very tragic information” as she knowledgeable followers about Willie’s passing. “Life is so unfair and nothing is ever promised,” she wrote. “God relaxation your soul Willie. It was a pleasure to sing with you and to know you.”
Willie gained over the hearts of viewers throughout his run on Idol. Along with having an unimaginable singing voice, Willie additionally had an unimaginable story. He shared that he was 600 kilos earlier than approaching the present and was hospitalized with fluid in his lungs. This motivated him to drop some pounds, main him to shed practically 200 kilos earlier than starting his Idol journey.
Willie had posted a video on Instagram simply hours earlier than his loss of life. Within the clip, he was singing in a parked automotive. After listening to of Willie’s passing, followers started flooding the feedback part of the publish with messages of affection for the late singer. “Fly and sing with the angels and dance amongst the celebs good friend,” one individual wrote, whereas one other added, “Some of the sort and real folks I’ve ever endured. Some of the gifted artists I’ve ever had the privilege of working with.” The outpouring of affection from those that knew Willie each personally and as followers was felt within the aftermath of his loss of life.
On American Idol, Willie misplaced to Chayce Beckham through the season 19 finale. Nevertheless, he went on to proceed pursuing music after his time on the present. He even had a present arising in London on Nov. 12, which he had excitedly been posting about on Instagram beginning in September. A few of his most memorable performances on Idol included his audition, the place he sang “Diamonds” by Rihanna, in addition to subsequent renditions of songs like “Wind Beneath My Wings”, “Set Hearth to the Rain,” “Glory,” and “Georgia on My Thoughts.”
“I really feel like I’ve modified as an artist,” Willie stated after the present ended. “Earlier than American Idol, I didn’t imagine in myself as a lot as I ought to have as an artist and it has undoubtedly helped my confidence and helped me imagine in myself extra. I really feel like that’s all I would like for my profession to take off. I simply have to imagine in myself a bit extra.”