Jackie Cole, American Idol Finalist, Diagnosed with Cancer
Jackie Cole is in for a battle far more difficult than anything she faced on the American Ido stage.
The singer has been diagnosed with thyroid cancer.
Known to viewers simply as “Jax,” Cole finished third on Season 14 of this Fox singing competition, losing out in the end to Nick Fradiani and Clark Beckham.
She made a strong impression on viewers with her unique look and attitude, as well as her impressive vocal chops.
Now, the 20-year old has opened up to My Central Jersey about her cancer diagnosis.
“It was very unexpected,” Jax told the local news outlet on Monday.
“When you’re 20 years old, you have this Superman entitlement mentality, like you’re indestructible. And sometimes all it takes is God telling you it’s time to take a break for you to understand that you are most certainly not.”
The New Jersey native says she discovered a “small lump” on her throat while shopping with her mother and father just prior to taking the stage for a performance at New York City’s Webster Hall in April.
As a result, Jax went to a local urgent care center.
Once there, physicians discovered 18 tumors on her thyroid, a dozen of which tested positive for cancer.
They diagnosed her with Hashimoto’s disease, which is a type of hypothyroidism.
It didn’t take long from there for Jax to undergi surgery to have her thyroid and several nearby lymph nodes removed.
“The first thing I did when I found out about the cancer was crack a joke,” Jax continued to My Central Jersey.
“My little bro knows me the best. The second they wheeled me out of surgery, he said, ‘Man! I tried to warn you the music business was cutthroat.’
“Thank God I have people in my life that were there to help me deal with this when my reality finally clicked for me. I’m a tough guy, but I don’t think I have ever experienced anything scarier.”
Aside from watching Game of Thrones and Orange Is the New Black during her recovery time, Jax says she worked on new music.
She hopes to have it ready for public consumption this fall.
Look for her to take part in the New York City Marathon on November 6 as a way to raise money for Tuesday’s Children, an organization formed after the 9/11 attacks to support families affected by terrorism and loss.
Most people are unaware that Jax’s dad was a first responder during the attacks.
Pretty amazing family, huh?
“I have had some time to be with my own mind and reflect lately, and I think it’s time I give this thing a real shot,” the singer said on Monday.
“I am a very theatrical person, so crossing that finish line on November 6 is what I want to do. To officially prove I can kick this thing’s ass.”
We’ll be rooting for her, that’s for certain.
Please join us in wishing a full recovery to Jax.
We were fans of her during her run on American Idol.
We’re even bigger fans now.