rickey smith dead

Rickey Smith, American Idol Season 2 Finalist, Dead at 36

American Idol Season 2 finalist Rickey Smith was killed in a multi-car accident Thursday night, according to TMZ.

Smith, who memorably donned a disco-fabulous Afro wig for a performance of Earth Wind and Fire’s “Let’s Groove” and wound up finishing eighth behind Ruben Studdard and Clay Aiken, was 36.

He was also known for smiling and chanting “Hercules! Hercules!” during his run on the show.

According to TMZ, Smith’s vehicle was hit head-on by another car traveling the wrong way down Oklahoma’s I-240. That driver was booked for DUI.

Several of Smith’s Idol compatriots took to social media to express their sadness over his passing:


Watch Smith’s Country Week performance of “I’ve Done Enough Dyin’ Today” — as well as a duet with Season 6’s Melinda Doolittle on “You’re All I Need to Get By” — below, then share your own memories in the comments.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Brian says:


  2. Lola says:

    That’s sad. RIP. This is the second death I’ve heard about in Oklahoma. The first was Monty Williams wife(Thunder assistant coach). What’s going on there? Now I know accidents happen everywhere but it’s crazy that two people that were in the public eye died from car accidents from other people.

    • Sabino says:

      It’s called life dumb ass

    • flutiefan says:

      OK has a history of having bad roads. I know this accident doesn’t appear related to that, but it’s a reason they have a lot of problems there.
      The government is more interested in erecting statues of the 10 commandments and in preventing women from getting health care than in working on their infrastructure.

      I apologize for the other poster who called you a dumbass. So not necessary.

      • James Clemens says:

        Unecessary for sure. But it provided you with a soap box to change the subject and push your political opinion.

  3. Murica! says:

    Very sad news. RIP Rickey. I hope the driver gets what he deserves.

  4. Angela says:

    Oh, my god! How awful. Rest in peace, Ricky.
    And seconding the hope that drunk driver gets punished. I do not get why some people still think that’s an okay thing to do.

  5. Lisa G says:

    Rickey was one of my favorites that season. Loved his voice and his enthusiasm. RIP

  6. Ryan says:

    Perhaps “I’ve Done Enough Dyin’ Today” is a poor choice to embed the day he died…

    • Kathy Ŕogers says:

      I agree about that song choice as well. RIP Rickey and I wish you a happy birthday up in heaven where you will live forever! ♡Kathy

  7. When are people going to learn NOT to drive drunk? Never I guess. Hope the driver gets a cellmate named Bubba.

  8. MyFavoriteSong says:

    RIP Rickey. Wonderful voice, funny and warm personality. Condolences to his family and friends.

  9. Robert Palmer says:

    Wow…that’s very tragic…especially when a drunk driver was involved. May he R.I.P and may his family have peace and comfort.

  10. Mary says:

    Wasn’t a faithful view during season two so not familiar with him, but such a tragic loss that could have been avoided. I do not understand how people get behind a wheel after they have been driving. Two lives wasted. My condolence to his family.

  11. jyangel82 says:

    I’m so heartbroken right now. Rickey will be missed by all his SWAU friends!!!!!! This is a sad day. I’m praying for his family. Rickey was so funny and kind. He could cheer up your day by just singing “mmmhhh” in his own way. Always smiling and praising!!!! God gained an Angel! Boy that choir in Heaven is even more amazing now!

  12. flutiefan says:

    I always appreciated his personality and his enthusiasm. Very sorry to his family and friends.
    RIP, Rickey