Boyd, Former 'America's Got Talent' Winner, Dead at 42


Neal Boyd, an opera singer who won NBC's "America's Got Talent" and dabbled in Missouri politics, died June 10 at his mother's house in Sikeston, Mo.

Boyd, who appeared in season 3 of the U.S. talent competition, passed away in Sikeston, Missouri home. Neal passed around 6 PM, and adds no autopsy will be done. His post-Talent career included an album, My American Dream, and performances for multiple US presidents.

Last year Neal and his mother Esther were involved in a near-fatal auto crash when the vehicle he was driving hit two trees. They'd been slowly recovering since then.

He also bagged the talent contest's $1 million prize as well as a Las Vegas residency at the time. "It was my mom who really kept the family together".

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Known as "The Voice of Missouri", Neal's hometown has now marked October 2008 as "Neal E. Boyd month". "[Recovery is] a very slow progress". He released the album "My American Dream" in 2009 and performed at the 2012 Republican National Convention in Tampa.

Piers said: "You know Neal, as you began to sing, I think the whole audience felt electricity on the stage".

The Missouri native noted that "it just feels like something great is about to happen once I get back on my feet and back in front of the audience again".

"Just be grateful that you survived", he continued.