May 24, 2024

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An investigation is underway after “American Idol” star Mandisa is found dead

An investigation is underway after “American Idol” star Mandisa is found dead

A spokesman for the Franklin Police Department said officers were involved in an active death investigation on Friday after Christian singer and “American Idol” alum Mandisa was found dead in her Nashville-area home a day earlier.

Mandisa, born in Citrus Heights, California, as Mandisa Lynn Hundley, is 47 years old.

The singer's representative, The Media Collective, issued a statement confirming her death on Friday morning.

“At this time, we do not know the cause of death or any other details,” the statement said. “We ask for your prayers for her family and close circle of friends during this very difficult time.”

Franklin Police have refused to confirm that Hundley is the deceased in the death investigation, but the address of the home where the investigation is being conducted was linked to the singer through a records search.

“What I can confirm is that our officers responded to the residence for a death investigation Thursday evening, and it is being actively investigated,” Max Wenitz, a spokesman for the Franklin Police Department, wrote in an email to the Tennessean Friday.

No other details were immediately released.

After growing up in California, Hundley attended Fisk University in Nashville and was a member of the famous Fisk University Singers. She graduated from Fisk in 2000 with a bachelor's degree in music, according to the university.

In 2005, Hundley auditioned for “American Idol” in Chicago, where she reached the final nine.

Hundley released her debut album, “True Beauty,” in July 2007, debuting at number one on the top Christian album charts with its debut single, “Only the World.”

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The Christian artist would win Best Contemporary Christian Music Album for “Overcomer” at the 56th Grammy Awards in 2014.

David Pierce, chief media officer at Christian radio station KLOVE, posted this quote on the radio station's social media platforms after hearing of the singer's death:

“Mandisa loved Jesus, and used her extraordinarily broad platform to talk about him at every turn. Her kindness was legendary, her smile electric, and her voice enormous, but it was no match for the size of her heart. Mandisa struggled, and she was vulnerable enough to share that with us, which helped us talk about our struggles. Mandisa's struggles are over, and she is now with the God she sang about. While we grieve, Mandisa is home. “We are praying for Mandisa’s family and friends and ask you to join us.”

Fellow Christian singer Natalie Grant, who wrote the foreword to Mandisa's 2022 book “Out of the Darkness: My Journey Through the Shadows to Find God's Joy,She said this on Instagram about her friend:

“I can't find the right words. When I found out you died yesterday, I begged God it wouldn't be true. I remember our first Opry appearance together. We were so excited. But I remember our conversation so clearly. You always belonged there, Dessa. She lit up Your smile and spirit contagious every room.

Fellow musician Don Moen gave a statement to The Tennessean, saying that Mandisa was not only a powerhouse of talent, but also possessed a truly kind soul.

“We have served together many times, she sang background vocals on my album ‘Thank You, Lord,’ and she joined me on several tours,” the statement read. “On one particular tour, notes kept appearing in everyone's beds on the bus or in their instrument bags. These were encouraging messages like: 'You are so blessed and favored,' or 'You are such a blessing on this tour.'” Only at the end of the tour We discovered that she was Mandisa, whether backstage or center stage, her presence always brought joy and hope.

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We will continue to update this story as additional details become available.