Nikki McKibbin, American Idol Alum, Dies at 42

Nikki McKibbin during "American Idol" Season 1 Finale - Results Show - Press Room at Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, California, United States. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/WireImage)

American Idol alum Nikki McKibbin has passed away at the age of 42. The singer came in third place during the show’s inaugural season in 2002. That year’s runner up, Justin Guarini, broke the news on Instagram yesterday with a touching tribute.

“…I’ll never forget the day that her idol, Stevie Nicks, sent her flowers with a card that said ‘You are the Gypsy that I was…’. Nikki was on cloud nine and the joy and excitement that radiated from her was infectious. After the kind of emotional beating she took at the hands of the masses, she deserved to feel good about herself, even for a little while,” he wrote. “Rest well, ‘Gypsy’…and thank you for the laughter, merciless teasing, strength, vulnerability, love and friendship you showed me during our time together in the spotlight.”

Last night, Redeye Radio host Gary McNamara revealed via Twitter that McKibbin had suffered from an aneurysm and would be taken off life support. See his tweet and Guarini’s tribute below.

https://twitter.com/garyredeye1/status/1322720910441406465

 

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@realnikkimckibbin was a fiery, funny lady who could sing the Hell out of a rock song with the same kind of ease and command she lovingly used to cut you with her twangy Southern wit. ⁣ ⁣ Even in our 20’s when we were on American Idol together I could tell that she’d had a challenging life, and that not that many people had been kind to her along the way…⁣ ⁣ …but I’ll never forget the day that her idol, Stevie Nicks, sent her flowers with a card that said “You are the Gypsy that I was…”. Nikki was on cloud nine and the joy and excitement that radiated from her was infectious. After the kind of emotional beating she took at the hands of the masses, she deserved to feel good about herself, even for a little while. ⁣ ⁣ Rest well, “Gypsy”…and thank you for the laughter, merciless teasing, strength, vulnerability, love and friendship you showed me during our time together in the spotlight. #rip #americanidol

A post shared by Justin Guarini (@justinguarini) on

 

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