American Idol contestant Haley Smith has died after a motorcycle crash. The singer was about to turn 27 in November.
American Idol was the number one rated music talent show when it first aired back in 2002. The singing competition started at the audition stage, where all singing hopefuls tried their best to impress the judges, hopefully landing a golden ticket to Los Angeles. After weeks of competing, the finalists go to the live shows and perform in front of America, letting the fans decide who wins. Over the years, American Idol has produced stars such as Kelly Clarkson, Chris Daughtry, and Carrie Underwood.
Former American Idol singer Smith passed away at the age of 26 on an early Sunday morning. On August 31 at around 2am, the season 11 contestant crashed her motorcycle in Millinocket, Maine. The injuries she sustained were too severe to survive, and she died upon impact. Maine’s Office of the Chief Medical Examiner confirmed to EW that there was only one vehicle involved in the crash. Local police are currently investigating the accident but believe that the singer failed to negotiate a sharp turn along a residential road that becomes a highway in certain sections and lost control of the motorcycle. Smith’s family believed that a deer may have startled the singer, causing the fatal accident. The family also said that Smith was a very good rider and they have doubts that she just lost control of her bike.
A Utah native, Smith made it through the Colorado auditions of American Idol back in 2012. She was later eliminated in the second round of the Hollywood auditions. Smith impressed judges, Jennifer Lopez, Steven Tyler, and Randy Jackson with her original folk twist on “Tell Me Something Good” by Rufus and Chaka Khan, which she sang a cappella.
When judge Steven Tyler heard Smith originally sing in front of him at the auditions, he told the folk singer that it was an honor to have heard her voice, as it was like listening to a singer right out of his era. To lose such talent at a young age is hard to comprehend for American Idol fans. Sadly, Smith is not the first contestant to have died since the reality singing show started; several singers have gone before her. In a statement, American Idol expressed their condolences on the loss of Smith saying their thoughts and prayers are with her family.