‘American Idol’ finalist dies in vehicle crash

Crash happened on I 24 in Marion County

JASPER, Tenn. (AP) – A finalist on “American Idol” has died in a vehicle crash in Tennessee.

News outlets report the Tennessee Highway Patrol says 23-year-old Willie Spence died Tuesday after hitting the rear of a tractor-trailer near Chattanooga.

An accident report from the agency says the truck was stopped on the shoulder of Interstate 24 East when the crash happened.

The report says both drivers were wearing seatbelts and the truck driver wasn’t injured.

Spence was from Georgia. He finished in second place on season 19 of “American Idol” last year.

The singing competition show released a statement on social media, saying Spence “was a true talent who lit up every room he entered.”

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