This week America has talent the auditioners included the usual wacky assortment of doggy acts, danger acts, magical acts and comedians, as well as a former “Isolation Wrestling” champion who just spoke alike. Hulk Hogan with the judges until he gets the dreaded Red X. But there was a more serious contender, pop singer Jayy, who truly embodied the AGT American dream – a dream crushed, postponed, and then finally realized in honor of his late parents.

Jayy, aka Jessica Núñez, left the Dominican Republic for the United States at the age of 15 with her family, who opened a bodega in Philadelphia – and soon after arriving she began to fantasize about participating. to her new favorite TV show, AGT. “I’ll be there one day,” she said to her parents. “Are they happy that you are here?” Judge Sofia Vergara asked Jayy on Tuesday night, after which the singer dramatically hesitated, then replied, “I mean they are. They are in Heaven.

Jayy, visibly suffocated, went on to explain that at the age of 19, in 2011, the family-owned West Philly store, Lorena’s Grocery, was robbed at gunpoint, and her mother and father had been murdered right in front of her. According to a report by Philadelphia Investigator, Jayy’s father had rushed to the counter when one of the thieves planted a gun in Jayy’s side, begging them not to hurt Jayy or her other daughter, who was also working in the store that evening. . Instead, the gunmen shot and killed Jayy’s parents, as well as her aunt, before fleeing the scene.

Jayy became determined to bring the loose killers to justice, even cutting her hair to change her appearance and taking jobs at other bodegas in the hopes that she would meet them again. In February 2012, the men were arrested after surveillance footage linked them to two more heists, and in 2016 Jayy finally got the chance to testify against them in court. The killers were ultimately both convicted, after a month-long trial, and sentenced to three consecutive life sentences without the possibility of parole. “They thought that the little girl they were leaving alive was not going to be able to get on this stand. I was able to stand there and tell my family everything they did, “Jayy told the Applicant. “I did it.”

“I had to become the big sister of my siblings, and I stopped my dreams,” Jayy, now 29, who appeared on Univision’s Spanish singing show. Queen of the Canción in 2019, explained to AGT judges Tuesday. “I finally decided to focus on my music that I know [my parents] I loved seeing myself doing it all the time.

Jayy pays moving tribute to his parents on 'America's Got Talent' Season 16. (Photo: NBC)

Jayy pays a moving tribute to his parents in season 16 of “America’s Got Talent”. (Phot: NBC)

Jayy’s parents were sure to be proud of her superb hearing of Freya Ridings’ heartbreaking ballad “Lost Without You,” a feat that likely would have won a Golden Buzzer had it still been in the game. season, that of Heidi Klum, was frankly spoiled earlier in the evening on the impressive but whimsical quick-change artist Lea Kyle.) After the four misty-eyed judges, who were devastated to hear the tragic story of Jayy, gave a standing ovation to Jayy, Simon Cowell said he was amazed not only by her gorgeous voice, but by the very fact that she managed to dominate the performance. “To be able to sing a song like that, with these lyrics, with all these memories in my head, I think it’s extraordinary,” he marveled. “People like you are the reason we do this show, really. I think you are an amazing person.

“I felt like I was listening to your parents. They are here. I hear them through your voice and through your heart. It was so beautiful, ”said Howie Mandel. And Heidi said to Jayy, “Now is your time. I am ready to celebrate you.

Although Jayy didn’t get the Golden Buzzer, she won’t need it to get to America has talent Season 16 live shows – his dramatic voice and resilient spirit will be enough to get him there. And when she does, her parents will no doubt be there too. “I am sure they are happy and proud,” said Sofia. “Just having the strength to survive something so horrible says a lot about you.”

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