Iam Tongi, the winner of American Idol season 19, has been vocal about the influence of his late father, Rodney Guy, on his musical career. Rodney passed away in December 2021, just months before Iam auditioned for the show. Here is everything you need to know about Iam Tongi’s father’s cause of death and how it motivated him to pursue his dream.
Rodney Guy’s Battle with Kidney Disease
According to ABTC, Rodney Guy was diagnosed with stage 4 kidney disease in 2022. This means that his kidneys were severely damaged and could not filter the waste and toxins from his blood properly. He had to undergo dialysis treatment, which is a process that artificially removes the excess fluid and waste from the blood using a machine.
However, dialysis is not a cure for kidney disease. It can only prolong the life of the patient and improve their quality of life. Unfortunately, Rodney’s health continued to decline despite the treatment. He peacefully passed away in his sleep at home at the age of 57.
Iam Tongi’s Tribute to His Father
Iam Tongi was very close to his father, who was a singer and a musician himself. He taught Iam how to play the guitar and encouraged him to pursue his passion for music. Iam said that his father always wanted to see him sing on American Idol and that he wanted to make him proud.
Throughout the competition, Iam dedicated several performances to his father. He sang songs that expressed his grief, such as “Sound of Silence” by Simon and Garfunkel and “I’ll Be Seeing You” by Billie Holiday. He also wore a necklace with his father’s name on it as a way of keeping him close to his heart.
In an interview with Distractify, Iam said that he felt his father’s presence with him every time he sang. He said that he could hear his father backing him up and cheering him on. He also said that he hoped that his father was watching him from heaven and that he was happy for him.
Iam Tongi’s Victory on American Idol
Iam Tongi impressed the judges and the viewers with his soulful voice and emotional delivery. He was widely seen as the frontrunner of the season and received praise from celebrities like Lionel Richie, Katy Perry, and Luke Bryan. He also gained a loyal fan base that supported him throughout his journey.
On May 21, 2023, Iam Tongi was crowned as the winner of American Idol season 19. He beat out Grace Kinstler and Willie Spence in the finale, which was watched by millions of people. He performed his original song “I’ll Be Seeing You” as his final performance, which was a touching tribute to his father.
Iam Tongi said that winning American Idol was a dream come true for him and that he was grateful for the opportunity. He also thanked his family, friends, fans, and mentors for their love and guidance. He said that he wanted to use his platform to inspire others who have gone through loss and hardship.
Iam Tongi’s father’s cause of death was a tragic event that shaped his life and career. However, it also gave him the strength and motivation to follow his dream and honor his father’s legacy. Iam Tongi is a testament to the power of music and love in overcoming adversity.