Nightbirde, who was a fan favorite on Season 16 of “America’s Got Talent” has died after a cancer battle. She was 31.
The singer, whose legal name was Jane Marczewski, died Sunday, her family said in a statement provided to TheWrap.
“It is with the deepest heartache that we confirm that after a four year battle with cancer, Jane Marczewski, known to many of you as Nightbirde, passed away on February 19th 2022,” the statement read. “We, her family, are devastated by her passing and unimaginable loss. Many remember her from America’s Got Talent, where she performed her song ‘It’s OK’ and inspired millions of people around the globe with her messages of faith and never giving up. Those who knew her, enjoyed her larger-than-life personality and sense of humor. She had a witty joke for every occasion—even if the joke was on her. Her lasting legacy will be the gift of hope she gave to so many through her music and the strength she found in Jesus. We thank everyone for their messages of love and support.”
In a statement of its own, “America’s Got Talent” also remembered the singer: “Your voice, your story, and your message touched millions. Nightbirde will always be a member of the AGT family. Rest In Peace, Jane.”
Nightbirde went viral for scoring a Golden Buzzer from judge Simon Cowell. She quickly became beloved by fans as she shared her journey of battling cancer.
“I have a 2 percent chance of survival, but 2 percent is not zero percent,” she said during her audition. “Two percent is something, and I wish people knew how amazing it is.”
However, she was forced to drop out of the competition in August due to her health, saying at the time on Instagram that since her audition, “my health has taken a turn for the worse and the fight with cancer is demanding all of my energy and attention.”
That same week Nightbirde appeared on “Cuomo Prime Time” to go a little more in depth, saying “my liver right now is mostly cancer. More cancer than liver in there right now.” In November, she shared a more positive update with Chris Cuomo.
“You know what? I wish we would get a faster miracle,” she admitted. “But it’s happening slow, little by little day by day, I’m getting a little better. I did get a scan result back and a bunch of stuff that was there has now disappeared. And a bunch of the really big stuff has gone down in size. So we’re on the way.”
That said, Nightbirde also made sure to point out that it had been an overwhelming journey so far, particularly because it played out so publicly.
“It’s a lot to process, the highest highs and lowest lows of my life all happening at the same time,” she said. “And all of this playing out in front of millions of people is really — it’s a lot to carry. But it’s also such an honor because the whole world is carrying their own weight and we get to learn how to do this together.”
“We are saddened to learn about @_nightbirde’s Passing,” host Terry Crews shared on Instagram Monday. “Our Condolences goes to her Closest Family & Friends in such of This difficult time. We Love you, Nightbirde.”
In a statement on Twitter, Cowell wrote: “Heart breaking news to hear about @_nightbirde, she was an extraordinary person, so brave, so talented. She made a huge impact on AGT and the world. Her determination to fight this terrible illness was remarkable. Rest in peace, Jane. I am sending my love to her family.”