HomeEntertainmentWatch: ‘America’s Got Talent’ Contestant Performs Emotional Tribute to Wife Killed in Kobe Bryant Helicopter Crash

Watch: ‘America’s Got Talent’ Contestant Performs Emotional Tribute to Wife Killed in Kobe Bryant Helicopter Crash

by Matthew Wilson
Photo credit: Rob Carr/Getty Images

Viewers usually turn into “America’s Got Talent” for the bizarre, the strange, and sometimes hilarious. But instead, they got a heartbreaking story during a recent episode. Contestant Matt Mauser dedicated his performance to his late wife Christina.

Christina had been one of the several people aboard the doomed Kobe Bryant helicopter ride in January 2020. Christina Mauser lost her life alongside Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna, and others when the helicopter crashed.

Matt Mauser kept his wife’s memory alive with an emotionally charged performance of “Against All Odds” by Phil Collins. There wasn’t a dry eye in the crowd by the time the singer had finished.

“I’m a singer. And I’m here because my wife and I…we were both schoolteachers, and we retired from teaching so that I could do the music full-time,” he shared. “And she got the opportunity to coach girls’ basketball with Kobe Bryant. But on January 26th of 2020, I lost my wife in the same helicopter crash that killed Kobe Bryant.”

‘America’s Got Talent’ Contestant Remembers Wife

The “America’s Got Talent” remembered his wife during the episode. The two first met in a bar back in 2004. At the time, Matt Mauser was performing for the venue. He saw Christina in the crowd and knew he had to go on a date with her. What followed was a whirlwind romance that led to a 15-year marriage and three children.

“She was just this very humble, powerful, beautiful human being. My mom said, ‘If you don’t marry that girl, you’re stupid.’ We were married for 15 years. We had three beautiful children,” Mauser said.

Mauser got real and emotional discussing the days following his wife’s death. The news came as a complete shock to him and devastated him. In the immediate aftermath, Mauser focused on being the best father that he could to their children.

“There was pain,” he continued. “My focus immediately went to my children. You start to say, ‘All right, she would want me to carry on.’ She would want our kids to have happy lives, which I don’t know it’s possible, But I’m gonna try. You know, if I had it my way, I would have my wife, and I would be supporting her. But that’s not what happened. You know, it’s been a rough year. But…here I am.”

His children turned out to watch him advance to the next round on “America’s Got Talent.”

“I would like to make sure that my children see that, in spite of the grief that we’ve been through this year and that grief is not gonna define who we are as a family and that my children see that you have to find joy in life and you have to continue,” he said. “And if this can anyway help my children to chase their dreams, then I’ll take it.”