“You can’t wait until life isn’t difficult before you decide to be happy,” the singer told her audience.

Old America’s Got Talent Contestant Jane “Nightbirde” Marczewski died at age 31 of cancer this week, four years after she was initially diagnosed in 2019.

“Her lasting legacy will be the gift of hope she gave to so many through her music and the strength she found in Jesus,” her family said. in an obituary.

A fan favorite of the show, having received a gold buzzer in 2021 from Simon Cowell for his song Its good, her family and friends remember her for her cheerful personality and her Christian faith. During her preliminary interview with the judges on stage, she told them that the cancer was in her back, lungs and liver, while maintaining a positive attitude.

“She dedicated her high school years to volunteering with youth ministry at Cornerstone Church in Licking County, Ohio. She also spent many nights and weekends leading worship at Christian events throughout Ohio. It was during this time that she cultivated her love for music and ministry,” her family said.

“[During college]when she wasn’t writing or singing, she shared Jesus with underprivileged youth in her neighborhood while providing them with after-school snacks.

She led worship services at Belonging Church in Nashville, Tennessee and also volunteered as a camp counselor and at the Davidson County Jail, according to the obituary.

“Many now know the Lord because of his evangelism and commitment to Christ,” his family said. “Those who knew her appreciated her larger-than-life personality and her sense of humor. She had a witty joke for every occasion – even if the joke was on her.

After his outstanding performance on America’s Got Talentshe had to pull out of the show soon after due to health complications.

“It was the most authentic thing I’ve heard this season,” Howie Mandel said of his first performance on the show.

Despite the continued recurrence of her illness – she has gone through three bouts of cancer – she remained in a warm and hopeful spirit in the messages she shared online.

“You can’t wait until life isn’t harder before you decide to be happy,” she said after her first performance.

Celebrities who met Marczewski during her singing career have reached out to share their love and prayers for the late artist and her family.

Cowell, the creator of America’s Got Talentwrote on Twitter, “Heartbreaking news to hear @_nightbirde, he was an extraordinary person, so courageous, so talented. She had a huge impact on AGT and the world. His determination to fight this terrible disease was remarkable. Rest in peace, Joan. I send my love to his family. Simon.”

In November 2021, she published an Instagram post sharing his thoughts on the last 20 months of illness.

The miracles she had always expected, she wrote, they thought would let her jump to the end, spared pain and unscarred.

“I had a miracle – but not the one I wanted,” she wrote. “I have to seek the light and find it. I can see how long love can last. I manage to walk the path with thousands of people like me, who can’t help but hope, no matter how hard we try.

“If we only take the miracles that taste sweet, I don’t think we’ll ever taste it. If we wait for the perfect song, I don’t think we’ll ever sing. Don’t miss it – it’s on now. We are in the miracle; we are in the dream.

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