American Idol: Danielle Finn’s ‘Poppy’ Dies After Alzheimer Battle


American Idol Top 24 contestant Danielle Finn shared sad news on social media today. Her beloved Poppy has passed away. Over the past few years, he suffered from Alzheimer’s disease, which the 17 year old singer from Los Angeles talked about on the show.

In a video package during the Hollywood Week Genre Challenge, Danielle revealed that her grandpa “totally inspired” the singer to try out for American Idol. “We used to watch the show all the time,” she said, “It was like a really big spark in me that he always really believed in me and loved my voice.”

But in a cruet twist of fate, Danielle explained, “Now I’m here, and he has Alzheimer’s. He doesn’t really know exactly what’s going on.” The package featured a sweet clip of the two singing “You Are My Sunshine” together.

Danielle did explain to her “poppy” that she was going to be on American Idol. She sang for him, she said. “I could just see his eyes brightened a little bit more than they usually do.” She added, “I feel sad not being able to share this whole process with my grandfather, but he is definitely in my head and in my heart throughout this whole thing. It pushes me to really do my best for him.”

After, Danielle sang a cover of “Easy On Me” by Adele that got the judges Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan on their feet. Not a spoiler: She advanced to the Duets Challenge.

“Thank you for inspiring me to take on my American Idol journey”

Danielle announced the news with a photo of herself as a young child with her grandfather. The caption reads, “Oh Poppy, you were everyone’s rock. You knew how to put a smile on anyone’s face and give the best advice,” she continued, “Thank you for inspiring me to take on my American Idol journey, and for always supporting me throughout my whole life. I just wish I had you for a little longer. I love you with every piece of me! I know you’re watching our family and I hope you’re in a more comfortable, peaceful place now.”


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About mj santilli 35052 Articles
Founder and editor of, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!