Rest in peace. Former American Idol contestant Haley Smith, who is probably best known for her audition during season 11 of the show, died on Saturday, August 31, In Touch can confirm. Smith, 26, was pronounced dead when police arrived at Medway Road in Millinocket, Maine, around 2 a.m. Authorities confirmed she failed to make a sharp turn while riding on her motorcycle, Us Weekly reported.
Haley’s father, Mike Smith, told TMZ that her family thinks a deer may have been involved in the tragic accident on the rural road. He implied that the former reality show contestant was a good rider, and her family doesn’t think she just lost control of her bike.
Haley auditioned for American Idol in Colorado when she was just 18. She performed Rufus and Chaka Kahn’s “Tell Me Something Good” for the judges at the time — Randy Jackson, Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler. She made it through to Hollywood, as seen in the audition above.
“It’s not perfect but I actually kinda like that,” Randy told Haley after she performed. Steven, now 71, told her, “Wow, I love your voice. So much. You’re right out of my era. And I’m honored to be here, listening to your voice.” High praise, indeed.
“I bet you’re even more comfortable when you have a guitar or you have music around you too, huh?” Jennifer, 50, asked. Haley admitted that was the case, and Randy added, “I just love the commitment to you being who you are, and just the natural gift. We’re always saying to people, ‘Make it your own. You don’t need to sound like the record.’ And you definitely were doing your own thing with this. And I love that.”
“Warm weather and Hollywood, here I come!” Haley excitedly told the camera after she was sent through to the next round. Our thoughts are with her whole family as they mourn her tragic death.
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