Grandma Lee, ‘America’s Got Talent’ Alum, Dead at 85

The America's Got Talent family is mourning the loss of one of their own. On Friday, TMZ reported that Grandma Lee, who competed on Season 4 of the talent series, had passed away at the age of 85. According to the publication, Lee died with her two sons right by her side. It should also be noted that her passing was reportedly not related to the coronavirus.

Lee's son Kelly told TMZ that his mother passed away on Friday afternoon at her assisted living facility in Jacksonville, Florida. Kelly expressed that Lee had been doing comedy shows up until November. However, after a show in Tampa, Florida, Lee fell in her hotel room and broke her hip. Lee reportedly never fully recovered from the injury. The former AGT contestant reportedly passed away while her two sons, who spent time reading texts and Facebook posts about Lee during her final days, held her hands. Kelly explained that once the coronavirus pandemic has subsided, they will have a service in celebration of her life. The family also shared that upon Lee's death, "Heaven just got a whole lot funnier."

Lee previously competed on the fourth season of AGT back in 2009. At the time, Lee, who performed stand-up comedy routines, made the top ten and made it all the way to the finale. She reportedly gained a large fanbase following her time on the NBC competition before she was ultimately eliminated. Back in 2009, Lee spoke with PEOPLE about her time on the show. According to the comedian, she had been involved in the comedy scene for quite some time before she made the jump to AGT.

"All my material is based on the truth. I go up there and wing it," she told PEOPLE. "But I practiced it to myself. One of my sons will help and time me and say different things. Like last night, I was going to say, 'God bless America. God save the King. Thank you Jesus.' He said, 'Don't say, thank you Jesus, you don't want to offend somebody and risk it.' I don't think it would have made a difference but I don't want to risk it."


When asked how long she has been doing comedy, Lee explained that she had been in the business for over a decade before coming on to AGT. She noted, "I have traveled all over the country doing comedy. But I had to clean it up for the show. I won't say a cuss word or anything to jeopardize myself. I can do clean or edgy."