Fly high, Nightbirde: ‘America’s Got Talent’ golden buzzer dies after 4-year cancer battle

By Rjay Zuriaga Castor

PHOTO: America's Got Talent (Facebook)

Jane Marczewski, popularly known by the stage name Nightbirde — the woman who inspired hope through her music in her America’s Got Talent (AGT) audition, has died at age 31 after a four-year battle with cancer.

"We, her family, are devastated by her passing and unimaginable loss," the Marczewski family said in a statement, confirming that the former has passed away on Saturday, February 19 (PST). 

"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 family added. "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."

Originating from Zanesville, Ohio, Nightbirde, during her AGT audition in June of last year, shared that she had been battling cancer in her lungs, spine, and liver — leaving her with only a two percent chance of survival. 

"I have a 2% chance of survival, but 2% is not zero percent. 2% is something, and I wish people knew how amazing it is," she said in a footage backstage before her audition.

In her audition, she performed an original song entitled "It's Okay," which tells "the story of the last year of (her) life." 

Her performance earned admiration from the public with her hopeful spirit amid her illness and wowed the judges, provoking Simon Cowell to push the coveted golden buzzer — giving her a free pass to automatically advance to the live shows.

Two months later, Nightbirde, with a heavy heart, announced that she could no longer continue her AGT journey as her health had taken a turn for the worse and her fight with cancer was demanding all her energy and attention. For her, her AGT journey was an “honor and a dream come true.”


As of press time, the cancer warrior’s AGT audition had been viewed over 39 million times on YouTube, and her original audition song has reportedly been one of the most downloaded songs in the US. 


Edited by Phylline Calubayan
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