Every now and then, an American Idol contestant reveals their heartbreaking backstory and brings the audience to tears, and this season it was Marcio Donaldson's turn to make viewers cry! (Fans even started a Go Fund Me page for Marcio.) The aspiring singer shared his incredible story about his life in Compton, CA and becoming a father to his nephew with judges Lionel Richie, Katy Perry, and Luke Bryan before his audtion.
"Growing up in that neighborhood, it was a lot of shooting, a lot substance abuse, a lot of people who did not see the age of 13 years old," the 28-year-old revealed in his introduction. "My mother tried her hardest but children services ended up placing me and my sister in the system so I found refuge in my music."
Marcio explained that he turned to singing because it gave him hope while he was living in foster care. As he became an adult, he continued to pursue his dreams — but then his sister got pregnant. Due to drug issues, she could not keep her baby and that's when Marcio stepped in. "The police and the social worker came to my home, they brought him and here was this week-old baby," Marcio said, getting emotional. "They said, 'You have to decide if you will keep this child or he goes in the system.'"
Since Marcio didn't want his nephew to go through what he went through in foster care, he decided to take in little Rashad. Even though Marcio said he had no idea what he was doing at first, his nephew turned out to be a gift and becoming a father changed his life. "Now, I'm not only performing for me, I'm performing for my son," Marcio said. "I want to show him what a man could really do when you step up to the plate."
So even if Marcio doesn't make it to the Top 10 — he's still a winner in our books! Be sure to tune into American Idol, airing Sundays and Mondays at 8 p.m. on ABC.