Evie Clair is a finalist on America’s Got Talent and she has fought through the tragedy in her family all season. Her father, Amos Dean Abplanalp, appeared backstage with Clair’s mother Hillary during her first audition on AGT and the couple could not look more proud of their daughter. Clair brought her parents to tears as she performed and revealed to the judges that her father was suffering from cancer. Unfortunately, over the course of the season, Clair’s father Amos lost his cancer battle and passed away, leaving behind his wife and five children. Read on to learn more about Amos, his passing and his daughter Evie Clair.
1. Evie Clair’s Father Suffered Stage 4 Colon Cancer
Clair revealed on AGT that her dad Amos worked for a local jail and that he continued to work even when he was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer. After about a year and a half of fighting the disease, he succumbed to his illness on September 7, 2017. His family and children made the difficult decision to take him off life support. Mom Hillary wrote in her blog that each of their children had alone time with their unresponsive dad before they all said goodbye to him.
Amos Dean Abplanalp died at Banner Gateway Medical Center in Gilbert, Arizona.
2. Clair’s Mother Hillary Has Documented Amos’ Passing on Her Blog
This week has been the best and worst week of my life. I'm so grateful for the memories I've made with my family in the past year and a half. I'm so grateful for my dad being such a great example of faith and strength. He has endured so much and all that pain has finally come to an end. He is in a place "12 gazillion" times better than this and I know he is so happy there. Thank you to all the people who have supported my family along this journey. I love you all. I'll miss you so much, Daddy. Thanks for teaching me to love salsa and chicken wings and most of all the Lord. Love you lots. RIP: 9/7/17❤️
On Clair’s mom Hillary’s blog, she has documented her daughter’s AGT journey, along with her late husband’s cancer battle. The blog features kind words from others who knew Clair’s dad Amos, photos of him in the hospital, funeral photos, pics of Amos in his casket, and touching tributes. Clair’s mother Hillary has also praised her husband for his love over the years and wrote that:
The last thing Amos said to me last week was “I love you!” He has said it to me a million times over the past 20 years but I know it without him ever saying it. He showed me by the way he treated me with respect and served me and sacrificed for our family.
Hillary says she continues to miss her husband every day.
3. Amos Was the Inspiration for His Daughter’s Singing on America’s Got Talent
When Clair first auditioned for AGT, she told the judges that she would be dedicating her performances to her father. And, even when her dad was too sick to come to her performances on the show, he continued to watch the episodes and cheer for his daughter from his hospital bed.
4. Simon Cowell Gave Clair the Option to Return Next Season on AGT After Her Dad’s Death
Because Clair’s father passed away so close to the finale, AGT judge Simon Cowell apparently gave her the option to skip the finale and return to the show next season. Ultimately, Clair decided to finish what she started and she performed the song “What a Wonderful World.” The judges praised her for her courage and her poise on stage.
Prior to her performance, Clair’s mother revealed:
Simon pulled Evie into his dressing room before the show to acknowledge a thank you card she had given him for the funeral flowers. She has found Simon to be such a kind person through this whole experience. Maybe being a father himself has softened him a little.
In Mom Hillary’s blog, she revealed that Cowell had sent Clair’s family a massive flower arrangement upon Amos’ death. In addition, the other judges and production crew sent flowers as well.
5. His Faith Was Very Important to Amos and His Family
In his life, Amos worked at a jail, he was a teacher and he was also a wrestling coach. What was very important to him, in addition to his family, was his faith and the church. He was a champion in wrestling growing up and his nephew Nick told Amos’ wife Hillary that:
Amos loved sports. He grew up playing little league baseball and basketball. He once pitched a no-hitter in an All-Star Tournament and was named MVP. But his real love was wrestling. He started when he was 4 in free-style tournaments.
And when it came to his family, Amos’ son Porter said that:
His main purpose in life, and one he honored, was to preside in our family as a husband and father. He made it a point to eat dinner with us and talk with his children about our lives and struggles. He held family home evening each Monday night and held family prayer and scripture study each night with great consistency.
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