Bound to a wheelchair and weighing a hefty 540lbs, it didn’t initially look like Freddie Combs had much of a chance when his wife wheeled him out in front of four skeptical X Factor judges on Thursday night.
But the 41-year-old from North Carolina managed to wow the judges with his ‘heavenly voice’ after an emotional rendition of Wind Beneath My Wing at the final round of auditions.
‘I don’t believe you deserve to be stuck in this chair. I’ll back you if you back yourself,’ Simon Cowell told him, before putting him through to the next round.
Freddie had earlier revealed that he had weighed a whopping 920lbs just two years ago and had come close to death, before shedding 400lbs using a combination of diet and exercise.
‘I was bedridden and never came out of the house,’ he told viewers. ‘My music was never heard. My biggest dream would be to give hope to people who are my size. I hope the judges will look past my exterior and give a fat boy a chance.’
The judges were impressed, with L.A. Reid describing his voice as ‘heavenly,’ and Britney Spears saying he was ‘shockingly amazing.’
‘Receiving four yes’s is a yes to my future and a yes to my health,’said Freddie.