Howie Mandel remembered the late “America’s Got Talent” contestant, Nightbirde, as an “inspiring bright light.”
The 31-year-old singer-songwriter – who was Simon Cowell’s Golden Buzzer on Season 16 – lost his battle with cancer and the AGT judge was among the first to pay tribute.
He tweeted: “@Nightbirde was such a bright and inspiring light in our lives. We must live on and learn from his words and his words. Although I feel horribly for his passing, I feel lucky to have him met, heard and known. .(sic)”
News of the tragic death of Nightbirde – whose real name was Jane Marczewski – broke on Monday (21.02.22) but ‘AGT’ host Terry Crews.
He wrote on Instagram: “We are saddened to learn of the passing of @_nightbirde. Our condolences go out to his closest family friends. [during this] hard time. We love you, Nightbirde. (sic)”
Nightbirde moved the jury to tears last year when she auditioned with her original ballad, “It’s Okay,” a song that chronicled her battle with lung, spine and liver cancer.
She told the panel she only had a “two percent chance of survival.”
She added: “But two per cent is not zero per cent. Two per cent is something and I wish people knew how amazing that is.
“It’s important for everyone to know that I am so much more than the bad things that happen to me.”
Although Simon hitting his golden buzzer sent the singer to the finals of the competition, Nightbirde ultimately had to withdraw due to her declining health.
She announced in August 2021: “Since my audition, my health has deteriorated and the fight against cancer demands all my energy and attention.
“I’m so sad to report that I won’t be able to continue this season of AGT. Life doesn’t always give those who deserve it a break – but we already knew that.
“Thank you for all your support, it means the world to me. Stay with me, I’ll get better soon. I’m planning my future, not my legacy. Beaten enough, but I still have dreams.”